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Blind Dates

by Milton Ehlrich

A blind date is as much fun
as skating on thin ice
on a shivery winter day.

The agony of aloneness
makes you feel naked as a seal.
Arctic wind shrivels your privates.

You brush and re-brush your teeth,
scour underarms, and comb-over hair
to hide a balding scalp,

Tongue-tied if she’s a beauty,
but bored, if she has hairy legs
and a space between her teeth.

When the USO bused in women
for a dance at Camp Pendleton,
lonesomeness filled the air.

The ladies talked baby-talk,
chewed gum, and their pimply faces
and polished red nails,
made them seem quite dumb.

A few paired off, but most Marines returned
to their barracks to pleasure themselves
to the strains of Glenn Miller, playing
“Moonlight Serenade.”