POEM XV: “POPCORN WITH THAT”

I can’t be the only one
who walks out of the movie theater
in Ryan Gosling’s body.

For a few minutes,
if I don’t look down,
I can be anyone.

Colin Farrell, Hugh Grant, Michael Madsen:
once, for three hours after a “Mission: Impossible” installment,
I was Tom Cruise.

Vaulted up on the balls of my feet,
holding myself on invisible gymnasts’ rings;
head gyroscope-steady behind that knife-crease nose.

The feeling wears off,
of course: it’s impossible to look in a mirror and maintain the illusion,
and your friends
will tell you to stop
if you try to stay Tom Cruise for long.

It’s a ghostly little thrill
exquisitely and only inside your head
like hiding under a sheet
convinced that your mother cannot see you
even though you are standing right in the middle of the living room,
transfixed
by the end of the movie.

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