Dutch Treat

A woman wants to pay her share for dinner,
Perhaps to minimize her obligation,
Or maybe so she’ll somehow feel empowered.
But pretexts such as these can get no thinner,
For what’s the point of such a stipulation,
If she, in fact, has long since been deflowered?

I’ve read that on the streets of Amsterdam
A woman is allowed to show her wares
From windows in official red-light buildings
Before there’s payment or a Thank-you-M’am.
Imagine long intensive leering stares
From men not yet reduced to flaccid geldings.

Don’t think of chocolate, windmills, or a dyke;
Don’t think of tulips or of wooden shoes,
And don’t let meerschaum pipes becloud your gaze.
What’s most essential is to ride a bike
Along canals with delft-like lowland views,
Inside a gray hashish-supported haze.

But let us dwell once more upon the quim
That’s up for sale on every darkened street
For just a pocketful of paper guilders,
Where we may satisfy our every whim,
And nothing that’s desired left incomplete,
With girls who smoke without resort to filters.

C.B. Anderson was the longtime gardener for the PBS television series, The Victory Garden. Over the past eight years, hundreds of his poems have appeared in scores of print and electronic journals out of North America, Great Britain, Ireland, Australia and India. He is inordinately fond of single malt Scotch whisky.