To Have and Have Not, 1944
Betty Joan Perske, age nineteen, gives that look,
the one that shifts tectonic plates, to Bogie,
and that’s it: Germany surrenders,
Japan bows its apologies, and that sailor
smooches the nurse in Times Square. The world,
no longer black and white, makes love
as D-Day shrinks to just a time for planting
daffodils, and Hiroshima grows Toyotas.
Harry T. has lunch with Stalin; General
Patton takes up nursing Bonsai trees.
“You know how to whistle, don’t you,”
says Bacall, as the moon sighs and the Earth
sighs back. “Just put your lips together