“Stammering Fool” by Theodore Aronis


I see her there but stand dumbfounded
all I want to do is say hi
but I stand here dumbfounded, stammering
I cannot form the words to just say hello

her smile, caught me off-guard, somehow
I stand here struggling to think, to form words
this undeserving slack-jawed fool
my legs, usually strong, have turned and failed me

why doesn’t somebody slap me and end this daze?
yes, a stammering fool caught slightly out of phase
seeking it, yet somehow averting her gaze
mumble and fumble and choke on my words

no fear, just an uncomfortable shutter
how do I ask her to dance? silly nonsense
blather and tongue tied noises I seem to utter
a ringing in my ear with the thump from my pulse

red-faced and gasping, the words finally rang out
she looked, smiled, then with no doubt
fearing a failure, a long painful fall
I had no reason to fear at all

those words I failed to produce
flowed forth without restraint of a sluice
she said yes, lovely, me so obtuse
a self-conscious, stammering fool