by J. Allyn Rosser
I have always wondered what it would be like
to be socially adept; blind; a bird.
I never have aspirin on me when I need it.
I love Fritos. I cannot resist a Frito.
I am drawn to people who at first seem callous.
Then I’m surprised to learn that they are.
I always think I will suck on an ice cube until
it dissolves but I always wind up crunching down.
I don’t always believe the truth,
but when given the chance I usually tell it.
Every time I cross a bridge over water I think of jumping
but I have never been suicidal.
Shaking hands is always distasteful. Too distant for someone
you like, too intimate for someone you don’t, or don’t yet.
I like to casually utter invented slang and proverbs.
Whose wings are flesh, his feet are wax.
I can’t use anyone’s first name until we’ve shared
at least four conversations, maybe a beer.
For me what’s scary about the movie image of Frankenstein
is the way his forearms jut out from his sleeves.
I stood for a long time on the Ponte Vecchio in 2002.
I was alone, and there was a lot of wind.
I plant things that the deer eat before they have a chance to bloom.
Then the next year I plant them again.
You can learn a lot about people by how frequently they close
emails with “Love,” but you need to get their password to find out
and by then it’s too late. I had a friend who used
the word love a lot, but her drawbridge was always up.
If you give me a choice between a bag of Fritos
and a homemade brownie I won’t know what to say.
When I have insomnia it is invariably after
I have been too truthful with someone.
Keeping a journal, he told me, is like simultaneously
building and burning a bridge over Lethe.
He could never remember I take my coffee black.
Nevertheless we were lovers.
J. Allyn Rosser teaches at Ohio University and has many credits to her name, including winning the Colorado Prize and Akron Prize.