Poem of the Week

Informal Twinkie Purchase
(from a 5 minute poetry prompt)

I wasn’t there for Twinkies
at all
I was there because
I can’t cry and smoke
at the same time
and the Marlboros ran dry first
but then I saw the Twinkies
next to some beef jerky
and recalled
an afternoon in second grade
one of the few times I was left alone
to eat my lunch in peace
still the brainy weirdo redhead
with the glasses who
went to another classroom for her math
because she was too good
for everybody else’s math
and the second graders stared
when I walked out
and the third graders stared
when I walked in
and I hated all of it but
they said it was good for me
and I didn’t know how to argue
so I tried to be okay with
occasionally being left alone and
occasionally having Twinkies in my lunch
because that was
all the magic I thought I would ever know

so I went to the register
in my pajama pants and flip-flops
hoping the cashier wouldn’t notice
I hadn’t put on a bra under my sweatshirt
and asked for my cigarettes
and set the package of Twinkies down
as gently as magic deserves
and the cashier said
“man I love those things”
and I smiled as best I could
and somebody buying a bottle
of extra watery water
said “are you kidding
those things will kill you faster
than getting hit by a bus”
because somebody
always has to be an asshole

21 April 2018

return to Words