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grew up in backwoods michigan where people are a little crazy.  at college she discovered boston is crazy too.  moved to atlanta and philadelphia for some white-collar job: still crazy. this is her first published work.

Hong Kong

There are gold bats,
bats on the wall. Four gold
bats on the wall and
bugs in the soup. Four bugs
in my won-ton soup at the
Hong Kong.

Smoky dragon breath (not even the townies)
like beer from the bar in the hole in the wall-my
eyes aren't too good here-spins the room and
the DJ, maybe those songs playing [Marco Polo]
were drinking too. Someone said "they" pass out
street cred. Well…the back door is big and round.

The twins are Jewish and not fat. One
plays guitar, and the other plays guitar, too
but who plays lotto? Two dollar tickets watch
tea for free leak into/out of cups-no handles-
this is the third pot today, I mean this week. Who
knows? We could ask that same waiter again.

Down down down stairs Kayla left her
number (617) 864-2136 by the no-heat heater;
wrong stall-sick like a beauty queen
won't call, too busy bending adieu
to that third Rangoon (she said it's) almost
as grody as the floor where her knees landed.

Actually, there are four floors
in the Hong Kong, but
back to business: Plastic.
Giraffes in my drink.
They're climbing the bowl-
I'm not even full yet.



(Where are you going?) I'm going away my
teetery eyeballs goggle sleepy each morning
on my pendulum commute I've been cutting off
cars with more aplomb lately and much less space
between. One day I'll rush in a deviant direction I
could circumnavigate islands, do compulsive laps
practice counting high as I can- til my arches
get sore, til my arches get sore, socks slippery
skating on wood kitchen floor.

Kittens. There used to be kittens in the wild
in the garage on the side of the road like some
Dadaist painted them there to not make a point.
One time we found two taking the back roads to
Hurley wheeling twenty-four wheels altogether heck
because wheels were there and the road was there and
we got up early because morning was there and the
kittens weren't unexpected-why, nobody ever
expected anything at all. But pendulums are quite

predictable: bills stalk me like private eyes they're
peeking, peeking in my secret spaces I never remember
asking for any they were always just here like
kittens but, um not I don't think kittens gave a
fuck if I picked them up (I did) or if I took off my
skates all purposeful to carry them barefoot to a
shelter miles away clearly more than I could walk or
skate whatever happened to those kittens WHAT

Bills haunt me like STDs (I will refrain from obvious
jokes about white-collar trysts with the Man) by the
time I finally check (Thursdays), my Box is stuffed
with viral strains. I strew them across the floor like
kibble and walking on, wrinkle their plastic panes
peeking, peeking, peeping my name on each printed
claim to financial accoutrements of modern life
…okay: even imagining that phrase feels bombastic
in my mouth, somewhat like the word "bombastic,"
how twee. Guess which heads get dizzy when my
lexicon's in overdrive….kittens!!

By the way there is definitely a point to this
anal apartment maybe I'm amassing a hatched
tchotchkey symphony: my stuff is all parallel and
perpendicular you see, it's mapped out on a
grid system just in case any interviewers peek
over at my notebook I'm armed with tidy notes, proof
of my tidy mind which I incubate at exactly seventy-one
degrees farenheit. Here is some irony: how much
are my utility bills in utils? Kittens!!

No no no that's the entire point-
Dada kittens on the side of the road are priceless
PRICELESS, us poor bastards haven't figured out
how to value non sequitur, will never buy tiny
random cats to punctuate paragraphs of our days.
Austere years-bulleted-are de rigueur anyway:
inefficient, kittens are just pauses and sighs. But I still

can skate away skate away skate away skate
across my wood kitchen floor down the back
roads to Hurley, two socks and twelve wheels
can go anywhere brush grows arbitrarily feline
can go anywhere
in                            my                           dreams
while I sleep in this peat, peat, peaty
subdivided bog that swallows you whole it
swallows you whole it swallows you whole

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