THE WRESTLER'S SHOWER
BY ZYSKANDAR JAIMOT
Amid smells of caustic sweat
Severe enough to make eyes tear,
We lather making sure to ignore
The sex of our strong bodies.
After four hours of switches, sit-outs,
Arm drags, take-downs, more sit-outs, reverses
Between frequent gulps of fountain water
Which felt so cold it made our teeth hurt
Then back into a room kept warm enough
Where walls seem to cascade wetness from our heat.
We are always circling, looking for advantage
Touching each other, shooting legs around
Hard muscular waists, hoping to ride wild bulls
Tightening like some constricting anaconda.
Squeezing breath from weakened opponents -
Then pinning them to the soft mat.
Like some strange insect mating
By forced submission. Using a nelson, or a figure eight,
Or a princeton armbar - slipped behind head.
Arms/legs bent at uncomfortable angles
On some defenseless rag doll
Thrown this way and that.
The friction from our skins
Giving off steam mixing with outrageous desire
As Bobby B - a 147lber - all muscle and vein,
Leans further beneath streaming shower spray,
Trying to hide increasing redness.
Panicking. Wishing to flee but afraid
To run the gauntlet of glistening bodies.
His member stiff, pointing like some obscenely veined referee
Giving direction to assume an offensive position.
Turning carefully like a shy boy
Beginning some porno epic. All of us
Looking at once. Yelling, screaming, throwing
Soap and wash towels. As if we could knock it down
Or wash it away from our thoughts. While Bobby stands
Grinning in embarrassment. Not knowing what to say
Or do. Feet frozen, like a finely carved Greek statute,
Abdominal muscles contracted, blue-green veins pulsing
From his groin to where no fig leaves covered.
If he desired any. The next day at practice -
When we pair off to wrestle, I make sure
I beat and break-down Bobby, pulling hard
With my left arm grabbing his waist,
While scooting my right leg between his knees.
Trapping him as my body weighs on him -
My furious right arm searches for the cradle,
To end this brief encounter by grasping
My opposite wrist as I force his head and legs
To be snared. Rocked like some baby firmly held
By a stork in a blanket of sinew and bicepbone. Holding him
There - just for a moment - looking into his eyes.