Epithalamium for Joaquin Fore, one of our favorite poets

Walking Forward with the Warmest Hugger


may you not fret

on the condition of the skin

but trust in the stuffing


may the frets

of your guitar

be worn and sticky

with children’s fingers


may your marriage be

the hardwood of the Narra tree

rose scented

and termite resistant


may your set backs

not suffocate the flame of your cuddles

and should you slip

into a brief cuddle-induced coma

may the tongue of Penny

be your defibrillator


may your love

keep walking forward

like an avatar, like a star,

like poetry bouncing off

Nativo walls like rubber

and sticking to you like glue


may you consider

your rebukes carefully

like Cool Hand Luke

who swallows with a smile

fifty hard boiled eggs


may you splash cold water

in the hot shower

of each other’s aging


may your love be an epic poem

passed down by family mouths,

two heroes beside a campfire

in the bosque beneath trees

dropping cotton

and in the shadows

if you relax your eyes just right

you’ll see us,

these 91 people,

and in the rustle of the reeds,

you’ll hear our voices, cheering you on


may you move forward

in the direction of Gemini

like the NASA space probe

who will arrive at his constellation prize

decades after his batteries have died


may your marriage out live its charge

may your love connect the dots of these 91 stars

to witness Gemini in person

to see those two figures

prancing about

holding hands

in an ocean of stars

An epithalamium is a poem written to celebrate a marriage. This poem by Tim Staley was presented at Joaquin Fore’s wedding reception last night in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

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