On What You Couldn't Have

The Consolations of Sociobiology


Bill Knott


(to JK)

Those scars rooted me. Stigmata stalagmite
I sat at a drive-in and watched the stars
Through a straw while the Coke in my lap went
Waterier and waterier. For days on end or

Nights no end I crawled on all fours or in
My case no fours to worship you: Amoeba Behemoth.
—Then you explained your DNA calls for
Meaner genes than mine and since you are merely

So to speak its external expression etcet
Ergo among your lovers I’ll never be ...
Ah that movie was so faraway the stars melting

Made my thighs icy. I see: it’s not you
Who is not requiting me, it’s something in you
Over which you have no say says no to me.

The Quicken Tree (American Poets Continuum)
-More from Bill Knott


  1. always nice to see a poem of mine from an old book posted, so thank you . . . these days I publish all my poems online for free open access: my Collected Poems can be read at:


    1. Thank you sir! I am so glad it pleases you - I will try to post more in the future!


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