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necktie moan by Bruce Harris Bentzman
published in Volume 4, Issue 3 on December 31st, 1997

in the morning before the mirror
i knot my tie
as men have bound themselves to labor
since adam was expelled from eden
it is the angel's sword
pointing at all we have left
of immortality
but i don't labor
making my brow sweat
ties stifle hard breathing
and strenuous movement
i avoid tie-catching machines
yoked to sears roebuck
four-in-hand
this noose is badge
worn around my white collar
this peacock's feather
this decorative fabric
that dangles in front
is a knight's banner
a marquis's sash
and classy restaurants
acknowledge this
being late at lunch one afternoon
i'll grow fat
will hurry back to work
but suddenly collapse in the street
and then someone will say
for god's sake loosen his tie

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