Mary Christine Delea





Sex and Death



One student sees sex in everything we read,

but not in a Freudian way, or a frat boy way,

or even in away that would make me cancel

early morning office hours like that semester

I had a level 2 sex offender in class.

He sees it and is repelled, chastising

with tongue clucks each pervert author.

He has cracked the code

and his tests are wars of morality,

battlefields to prove how duped I have been,

how naïve I must be. He is sure I am innocent

of purposefully trying to deflower

their brains, those tender muscles that are too busy

to think about death—which I can’t help

but see in every dead author we read—

because there is sex all around them, the sex

I am forcing onto them as if I were groping them

in my office, the sex that has so obviously

obsessed everyone secretly until—
thank God for us all--he came along.