At puberty I changed my allegiance
from Hulk Hogan to Ric Flair,
that kiss-stealing, jet-flying
Tired of taking my vitamins
and saying my prayers,
I wanted to style and profile.
Sequined robes and bleached blond hair,
It helped that the other Four Horsemen
were always at his side, while Hulk
couldn't keep his friends.
One by one—Mr. Wonderful here,
Macho Man there—they abandoned him,
turned heel. No matter how many shirts
he ripped off, he ended each match alone.
Better to risk disqualification, to throw
a chair or double-team an opponent,
if it meant standing among a crowd
when that final bell tolled.
Matthew Duffus has graduate degrees in English and Creative Writing from the University of Minnesota and the University of Mississippi. His work has appeared in a number of journals, including the Cimarron Review, New Ohio Review, and Grain Magazine.