We Are Primed to Look Straight Into Our Own Hearts, But We Aren’t Very Good At It

I slide in behind her

At an all-night diner.

“Is this where I check my privilege?” I say.


She brokers a peace deal with her skirt,

Turns in her booth,

Sucks on her tooth,


“Baby, that ship has sailed.”


I shudder.

That’s what she offers?

A worn-out, semiotic ghost

Aback a limpid, limping host?


A cliche for my midday?

I’d at least hoped for a trope.


But still, she’s got gams to die for —

A fella would lie, kill and pilfer!


So I forgive the gambit.

I admit:

I’ve drawn from that linguistic well myself,

Every once in a blue moon.

Meta’s the name of that tune, baby.



That reminds me:

I’m overreacting, maybe,

But I’d come to check my privilege, after all.

And she…


Well, she gets up. That’s what she does,

And I forget what the subject of my monograph was.


She slides in my booth,

Red of claw and truth;

Fluid, casual,

Like water seeking the low points.


“We are primed to look straight into our own hearts, but we aren’t very good at it.”

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