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Mojo for a man
By Kathleen Dunbar
Copyrighted by Kathleen Dunbar

I don’t want no fancy man
I want a ditchdiggin man
not afraid to get his hands dirty
hardworking and
somebody who can laugh
at this old world
climb out of the earth grinning
keep enough of his paycheck in his pocket
for bills and what is needful
and meet me, washed clean and smelling alive.

Damn, you’re trying too hard, he’d say
you’re a knockout just the way you are, he’d say
and with strong arms
he’d pull me to him, long-stem on my heels
and look me eye-to-eye.

I’d throw back my head and laugh for joy
tell him: I want to get down into the ditch with you
into the mud
let it ooze and suck and rush –
your kisses are so wet
and I am so thirsty –
what I am looking for is a long drink of water
I’ve been to hell and back
had enough of being lost
and having found myself is cause for celebration!

I tell you, I am looking for a man who will sing to me
in a voice so rich I can wear it on my skin
a man who knows how to sweeten honey
I mean – put it in a kiss
and give it to me
his mouth on mine
with a boy’s delicious mischief
and a man’s hard-edged working face
handsome in the cut of the sun.

I want a man who’ll hold me like I’m a bunch of flowers
with his hands pressed close into the live-wire me
a man ready for the long pause just ending
an “are my legs long enough to leap
from this jiggling stone to the other side
or will I end up in the river?” kind of risk
that, once taken,
will change our lives.

It’s not just sex I’m looking for
though I want our bones to fit
hip upon hip
but something beautiful and strange
as real as grit
as full as the thrum of a bell!
I want to clang in honeyed angles
joyous in the wind
our house filled with life, laughter
reasonable arguments
and the kind of love that ever-stirs the soul.

These bodies we have are warm for a reason
where are you, man?
all this work I’ve done on myself –
I’ve just come out of the oven, warm and sweet
snowy with powdered sugar . . . .

I know I am a woman because
my mouth is ripe with myself
and I am ready –
it’s kisses that I want
what my mouth can’t accomplish alone
and all the rich companion things that follow –
so I am standing on this moment
in my red shoes
I’ve put my red dress on
yes – I’ve put soft red cloth
over my breasts to let you know
I’m sending my heart through my singing hands
making this mojo
for a good man.


from Liars, Cutthroats and Dames, released August 4, 2017
Kathleen Dunbar/poem writing, vocals. Gawain/guitars, mandola, B-3 organ, shakers. Dan Feiszli/standup bass.



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Kathleen Dunbar San Francisco, California

You may notice my songs are about angels and devils, birth, life, death, about creation and crumbling destruction—the troubles we humans get ourselves into and the choices we make—some of them funky, some of them ending in the dark, others rising into the light of morning. Touching, humorous, spellbinding storytelling—my songs brings you into the irony, the tragedy, and the possibilities of life. ... more

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