In the Subjunctive

did you mean 
             to leave a comma there

was there a missing

what is the difference
                       between the subjunctive

and the imperative
                   i know an order 

when i hear one even if clothed
                                in a lie or threat

as for the subjunctive
                       expressing something desired

or imagined— our condition
                           has always been subjunctive

when will you acknowledge
                          our presence with respect

not the wait staff not
                       the maid not the mail

order bride not
                a plagiarist drug dealer

we tell our stories in beautiful
                                  language your heart

would break if you knew
                        but you have ears

stopped up with rancid milk
                            your teeth are bullets

that gleam with their own 
                          kind of bad light


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