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NEWEST, HOTTEST, TALLEST, THE MOST LONDON


--by Tammy Ho Lai-Ming


You are my newest boyfriend
(the hottest, the tallest, the most
London) who is now in France.

You told me in an email (written in
haste, in an internet cafe):
Last Friday you spent three hours
on a bicycle. You put my photos
on the wheels; and I was traveling
with you. Crazy curly-haired you.

You liked the red ones.
You said I was at once like a playful
angel and a shameless whore.
(I deplore the comparison!
I'm only an innocent girl.)

When you stopped by the Seine,
some Parisians, mostly females, you said,
asked if they could buy my
photos. They took you as an artist
(a photographer?)
lost in paradise. 'No, no, no,' you said. 'The
photos aren't for sale.
My girlfriend is mine.'

Am I already?
Your girlfriend? Yours?

Then, you're my newest boyfriend
(the hottest, the tallest, the most
London) who is now in France.

("Newest, Hottest, Tallest, the Most London" was first published in Poetry New Zealand, Issue 32, 2006 (p. 55).)