Jeopardy

from “Jeopardy”

Life’s tough choices. Beauty
contests, for instance, three goddesses
and a mortal judge, a straight-ahead
guy, no counter-intuitive there.
He taps the no-brainer button
and what’s his reward? A drop-dead
gorgeous babe, sex to die for,
envy of his mates in Troy.
Greeks up in arms, want her back,
lay siege? No problem:
one sensational shot with his bow
and arrow at the unprotected heel
of their pouty, vain hero
and Paris is home free. Except for
the wrath of Athena, goddess of war,
wisdom, justice, and other big-time stuff,
who doesn’t take rejection lightly
and oversees the burning of his city.
Next time, his father tells him, just before
he screws up in single combat and a two-bit
Greek dispatches him with a poisoned arrow,
go for the fierce, the bookish one.

Forthcoming in The Future Hurtling Towards Us (2018)