Shorthand for Flirtationships: 21st Century Edition
Anastasia Stelse is a native of southeastern Wisconsin, the former assistant editor for The Intentional, and a graduate from the MFA program at American University. She is currently pursuing her PhD in creative writing at the University of Southern Mississippi’s Center for Writers. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Poet Lore, Sou’wester, New South, Fairy Tale Review, and Crab Orchard Review, among others.
In shorthand, words are written as they are pronounced. Know is written no, say is written sa, sew is written so (GREGG Shorthand Manual Simplified, 1949).
Uz no nu wrds. Btr yt, uz no
wrds. Lng cn b trke. Sit syd
by syd, fone tukd n bak pckt
set 2 vbrt—a txt frm anothr
now givs d bst imprssn only
wen on vrbt. H’ll feel d slite
tngl, hs leg brshng ur thi. H’ll
wndr hu it is, may evn ask—
only smle, put ur hnd on hs
shldr, let ur fngrs spk, ther sft
pattr like smmr rain.