When they say Want,

they're trying to say Desire:
but it comes across as Need; 
or something craved but less 
urgent than Desire. 

And they say Our wants, or
they say, simply, Want:
as in the big consuming
longing that's hardest

to deny. But there's no
possible substitue for
the actual word
Desire. So when

did it seemingly fall 
out of style to say it like
it is? My want conveys
differently from

My desire. It seems
flatter: the air taken
out of ardor, the flame
tamped down to tame.

Can you imagine Lorca 
writing To burn with want
and keep quiet about it
is the greatest punishment

we can bring on ourselves; or
Willa Cather saying The world
is little, people are little,
human life is little. There is

only one big thing—want? 
I listen hard but there's 
just no substitute for
Desire itself. 
 
 

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