Three Prose Poems


Meg Pokrass

SETTLING

 

He took my hand, led me to the bathroom, opened the door and slipped in. The bathroom was dark. Through the partially opened window, an apartment with a yellow breakfast nook. His breath was on my mouth with the smell of fruit and white wine, sweet and sour sauce. This was where he felt safest; bathrooms, closets, tiny, ridiculous places.

 

Earlier that night, at a movie, I'd listened to him eating un-buttered popcorn. How each piece squeaked in his teeth. I believed I'd grow to hate this sound, and the idea made me want to plant my hand on his knee, which I did.

 

There were many ways to love, and to be loved, and none of them were just the way you dreamed as a child. My mother had been relieved to lounge around in an old, stained bathrobe, watch the news and fall asleep after my father left. Some people don't want the worries of entanglement, Mom had said. Some people prefer the music of their own lives. 

 

 

SIREN

 

There is a flustered buffalo in a hotel bed, and it is a man, and it is a man who wants me so much he is levitating like an endangered animal. He is mastering the art of being made extinct. I am that kind of pony, here today, gone tomorrow, all fancy and prancing and cruel. I administer pleasure, and then disappear, because I can, because I am a splinter, that is all I am when not making an animal happy.

 

There are the ones to take inside and to rock like babies, to rock until they groan and ask for pancakes.

 

There are ways to fly up against the heat of a man's sex, to singe his wings because nothing lasts longer than a good beer, or a fingerling potato on a cold night.

 

 

DIP

 

He said "nothing that whiskey can't cure,” poured some on his tongue and licked my face with it. I smelled coffee and liquor mixing with the water from my eyes. It should have been very easy to throw off my dress and jump in the lake after him. He said it would feel fine if I were drunk.

 

The cat and me, we lived in a place with mold and spiders. The cat had a knack for ripping spiders apart in front of me. Her cat-dancer toy was shredded from overuse. I couldn’t afford the good toys, ones that moved like real birds.

 

 

   

 

 About the Writer

Meg Pokrass is the author of "Here, Where We Live" forthcoming in "My Very End of the Universe": Five Mini-Novellas-in-Flash and a Study of the Form (Rose Metal Press, 2014). She is the author of 2 story collections, "Damn Sure Right" (Press 53. 2011) and "Bird Envy". Her flash and prose poetry have appeared in many journals, and widely anthologized, most recently in "Flash Fiction International" (W.W. Norton, 2015) and "Roadside Curiosities: Stories of American Pop Culture" (University of Leipzig Press/Picador).