Blackbirdan online journal of literature and the artsFall 2018  Vol. 17 No. 2
an online journal of literature and the arts
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Consider the girl in line behind
you to deplane, her Lululemon bag a nose
at your back. Calories in, footsteps
out: endurance running, runway
calm, start of middle age. Animal
hunger boring now, roadkill doe still
your tainted feminine after all
this time. The ratty crone ahead drags
her bag down, pouches holding shit
you can’t imagine. Humans hoard: packets
of jerky, ticket stubs, recollections
of sex disconnected from faces. A man
searching your hair for bugs,
dreams of his own. His ex-wife’s postures
of menace, useless as a feral cat
pissing on the wasteland behind 7-Eleven.
Pain’s aftermath can feel better than
love; that’s why you run
marathons. Let flesh push
you to the exit, tarmac black and ocean-
vast, but not too fast. Dogs panic
when trapped, so best to pretend you’re not.  

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