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Let Him Out


I pay attention to words, and I can say

with zero doubt that Nectar is a wonderful name

for a restaurant. It sounds like churning.

Say it without feeling something sweet

drizzling into you.


A new face fixated with a smile, eyes

caramelizing while I spill over about

the books I’ve read or those I’m trying to write.   

I am a brilliant performer, deliver

with deliberance,


                        which is not a word. And I point that out.

                        Another stone in a fortress raised in humor,

                        charm, and seemingly unwavering positivity.

                        But if you were to scale that wall and peek



                        you’d find a vastness, with a well situated

                        right in the middle. Not the type of well

                        teasing you to cast a coin, but the type

                        Buffalo Bill would drop lotion in. Except



As I walk up Madison Avenue, I’m not

thinking about New York City and all the horror

and wonder that takes place here. Instead,

I wore shoes I never wear and they’re digging

into my heels


while I consider holding the hand

of a new person and if I could allow that

kind of breach.  Instead I deflect.

OH! Williams-Sonoma! Anecdote anecdote

*Insert laugh here.


                        Meanwhile, back at the creepy well in my brain,

                        I decide to check on my hostage. A little

                        boy with two chipped front teeth, who

                        used to make up stories with his action figures

                        and Hot Wheels,


                        make burnt grilled cheese in the toaster oven,

                        hit his little brother and then feel instantly

                        guilty, and held his mother’s hand when

                        he would find her crying in the walk-in



                        This isn’t how you’re supposed to defend me,

                        he said as he looked through me.

Eunoia Review, 2020

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