Horoscope After O’Hara



I am not beaming charm, I am always waxing lean.

Why? I think I would rather be

Everybody’s best friend. But I am not. Oh well.


For instance, this horoscope:

“be ready for excitement, travel, flirtation!”

Is a marvelous opportunity

That does exist for some people:

Those who regard plants as people, who are able

To overcome all temptations,

& whose whole being

Is benevolent. (It is often hard

To resist their sex appeal!)

They speak another language—

And are, in short,

(& as the astrologers say)

“the whole package.”


But me? One day I am thinking

About trying to transform myself &

Some people who are like

Me—trying to escape from a self

Unable to think past dents and discords

Of the past—suggest looking to policies

Policing constellations for comfort.

But details unravel

(“in one way or another & possibly

In several, you are not quite ready

To rent it all in”)

More untidy when untied.


Love must be all or nothing, I read & so

As my presence was only ever half-

Way felt —I must consider

(and astrologers would confirm)

Myself an “empty packet.”

Christine Scanlon is a graduate of The New School MFA program and is currently an adjunct lecturer at the City College of New York. She has a poetry collection, A Hat on the Bed (Barrow Street Press) and work published or forthcoming from, among other journals, The Fem, Horse Less Review, and Flag + Void.