The Eighth Annual Valentine’s Day Poems

Don’t be afraid to love them.

Dear Hipster Valentine o’ Mine.
Your t-shirts aren’t funny.
And I hate your blog.
I’m dumping your emo ass,
But I’m keeping the dog.

Happy Valentine’s Day

to my favorite virgin.

I’d show you how much I love you,

but I don’t feel like getting married.

I’m writing this to tell you that I love you.
I’m writing this to tell you that I’ll always be true.
I’m writing this to let you know that no matter what happens, my heart is yours.
I’m writing this to let you know that I will never give up on us.
I’m writing this to let you know that you dropped a sock just now.
From the laundry basket? Yeah, right there, by your foot.
Where am I writing this?
Didn’t you know?
I’m writing this from inside of your house.
Please don’t call the cops.
I love you.

Just because I’m your uncle
Doesn’t mean I cannot love you
The right way.

If forever means forever —
it covers lifetimes.
If forever covers lifetimes —
It covers all the years of my life.
If forever covers all the years of my life —
Then it covers 18 to life.
If forever means forever —
Then I don’t understand why you broke up with me just because I’m doing a little time.
You best get your priorities in order because one day I won’t be in this cell
And you’re gonna be sorry.

Pier One.

Design Within Reach


… oh, sorry.

Baby Gap

Calendar Haven

… I was just listing off all the places…


The Yarn Barn

Something called an outlet mall.

…I’d never have to go to…



Color Me Mine

…if I didn’t love you so goddamn much.

I’m supposed to drink
at least 64 ounces of water
a day
to keep me hydrated.
How much of you
I need to absorb
so I can stop feeling
so thirsty?
How much of you
can I ingest
so I stop feeling
so hungry?
How much of you
can I touch
so I can stop feeling

Happy Valentine’s Day, Mom.
It’s weird I sent you this, right?
Yeah, I thought it’d be weird.
But first I thought it’d be funny,
because you have that picture of me
from when I was three
and I’m in the bubble bath
holding a bar of soap in one hand
and in the other — for some reason — a hot dog weiner?
I guess it was only funny in concept,
recreating the picture and sending it to you
now that I’m forty-three.
It’s too bad you couldn’t just see it in my head
when I came up with it,
because it was friggin’ hilarious.
Regardless, I’m no longer drinking tequila.

Take me home, Valentine.
I need to push myself into you, crawl into your skin, and be as close to one as we can be. I want to pile up on top of each other like premature hamster babies, furless and albino, mashed into the corner of our plastic cage, covered in afterbirth and cedar shavings, blind and trembling, hoping we aren’t eaten by our mother before dawn.
Valentine, did you just puke on me?

You. Are. Hot.

No, I mean your forehead. Seriously, like you’re running a fever.

What? Well, no, not if you’re sick.

I have work tomorrow. I can’t miss a day and I will not catch whatever it is you have.

What? I am sure that’s not true. If anything, that would give me even more of your germs.

What? Yes, I know dinner was expensive.

What? You’re fixing to be sleeping on the porch, mister.

What? Yeah, you’d better blame what you just said on a fever hallucination.

And pray you’ve got malaria.

You know me.
To the core.
You whisper sweet, sweet perfection
in my ear
and make my body tremble, twitch and groove.
when you get started
I moan in delight.
Even when you’re being random
you still know how to
make me smile.
You are 6,678 wonderful reasons
to press Play every morning.
Oh, 40 gig iPod.
You are bliss.

I once spent 24 hours in a row planning how I was going to spend the rest of my life thinking of only you.

Spicy curry, extra hot.
Half a bottle of cab.
Five cups of coffee, before lunchtime.
Four miles on the pavement, just after dawn.
A good friend’s teasing, causing a fierce blush.
A cup of miso soup and sushi for lunch.
These are the simple pleasures in life.
They are the daily components
of Pamela Ribon.
They are what makes
So fuck you, Rosacea.
I will destroy you with antibiotics
(both oral and topical)
until I can rise up and drink Merlot with abandon once again.
It will be worth the raging yeast infection
if I can just have my fucking nonfat latte without feeling guilty
you goddam piece of shit
fake princess-y disease.
What the hell?
I got diagnosed with something called “Being Pam.”
I’m surprised blogging isn’t one of the triggers, for Christ’s sake.
It used to be a good thing to have a healthy glow.
Now my dermatologist wants me to go goth
or my face will fall apart by the time I’m forty?
Fuck you, Rosacea.
My delicate skin will not keep me from tikka marsala.
Because I don’t want to live in a world that doesn’t let me drink or eat things that are hot.
I don’t want to live in that cold, cold world, the one filled with yogurt.
(Oh, and happy valentine’s day.)


It’s not the first moment that he sees me.
The first moment, his eyes grow wide
and the corners of his mouth reach toward his ears
and he looks like there was a way he momentarily had forgotten
just how much he loves me.
This is when his arms go up.
He might call me “Baby.”
He’s happy.
I’m not talking about this moment.
I’m talking about the next one.
Seconds later.
When suddenly, without any provocation from me,
Everything shifts.
His brow furrows, his arms come crashing down along with the smile and he’ll reach out a hand
— or sometimes just his thumb —
and it’ll touch some part of my face
something i can’t see
on my forehead
or cheek
or chin
or neck
and he’ll push/wipe/dab/smear at it and say,
“What’s wrong with your ___?”
And I’m flawed.
He saw it.
He needed me to know it.
This is how he touches his funny valentine.

I give up.

If you won’t let me love you,

Please then, just let me pretend you love me

And I’m ignoring you because I find your love to be pathetic.

That way I can leave you alone

And still find myself with some dignity.

Unless you want to make out right now.

In which case, that’s cool.

Did you hear something?
It sounded like it came from the living room.
I don’t know if it was one of the cats.
Hold on, let me feel around.
One. Two. Three.
Shit. It wasn’t one of the cats.
We should go see if someone’s broken into the house.
By “we” I mean “you.”
Me? But I’m so small and
Okay, how about we rock/paper/scissors for it?
Okay, ready?
Are we going one-two-three throw
or one-two-throw on three?
Ow. Don’t poke me, I can’t see anything and we’ve only got ten seconds before the killer comes in here, flips on the light and shoots us both.
I had rock!
You did not have paper.
Fine, let me feel it.
That is not your hand.
Well, whatever it is, it’s not doing a very good job of being paper.
Aw, hell.
This is a fun way to die.

Happy Valentine’s Day to all the stalkers of You may know my deepest secrets, but I know all y’all’s IP addresses. And I know when you search the archives for “panties pamie wet wet.” I will try to take all of the searches as compliments. Even “when did pamie get dumped by her last boyfriend?” So be good to yourselves on this weird holiday when we’re supposed to tell each other that we love each other, even if we don’t know each other very well. You’re supposed to be mine, and I’m supposed to be yours. That seems a little possessive, doesn’t it? Well, not as possessive as that one person who searched my archives for “pamie cage tie her down.” But you get what I mean.

When I say
I love you
I don’t mean
Until you don’t believe me anymore.
When I say
I need you
I don’t mean
Until you run out of money.
When I say
I want you
I don’t mean
Until you think I’m letting go.
My heart
is chained
to yours
like a feral hippie
latched to the last
oak tree
in Berkeley.

Want more? It’s like going through the Wayback Machine:
[Last Year’s Poems]
[Year Six]
[Year Five]
[Year Four]
[Year Three]
[Year Two]
[How It All Began]

24 thoughts on “The Eighth Annual Valentine’s Day Poems

  1. I really thought that last poem said “feral Hippo” when i first read it. i like hippos.Of course if i ever want to search your archives for these poems at a later date, I will probably end up searching for “pamie tie her down feral hippo” which won’t work. oh well.

  2. received the link to your site today. Read the poems. Gary Larson would like it. I like it too, but it’s somewhat grim. I guess that’s why I got the link sent to me. I still have to figure out what it really means (getting the link, I mean. I get the poetry).

  3. Pamie, you are amazing. Today hasn’t been the greatest V-day ever, and when I finally got home, I read your site (like I do every day, no I’m not a stalker shut up), and I laughed. Thank you, thank you, thank you….

  4. A friend of mine pointed me to your post today, after I ranted on how much I hate this holiday. Unfortunately, if you post poetry like this every year on v-day, I may actually find myself looking forward to it a a bit.Thanks for the laughs!

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