Involuntary Memory

I am obsessed with the narrative structure of this woman on television wearing a coral pantsuit.

Her mouth—a bright red human interest story about commonplace men and the pets that love them. 

How perfectly she matches blush with opinion, lipstick with fact. 

How aimlessly my eyes wander from the TV to the wallpaper and back.

A knife of light slicing through the cracked curtains breaks the spell of the anchorwoman.

It is morning again. I have been in bed longer than Proust. 

The summer heat begins to melt me and I run rancid over the wild flowerscape sheet set.

Birds are singing and worms have uprooted to bloom for them on sidewalks after three days of rain.

A knock on the bedroom door sounds out so softly it must be from the past. Whoever it is, I can’t let them see me like this, here in the present.

I need to make a change. I need an escape. I decide on an action.

I’ll ______________________, even if it kills me.

This is the only joke I know about death. 

Front page image by James Willamor.

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Randolph Pfaff

About the Author

Randolph Pfaff is a poet, editor, and visual artist. His work has been featured in PANK, The Destroyer, H_NGM_N, Open Letters Monthly, and SLAB, among others. He also edits a literary journal called apt and runs a small press called Aforementioned Productions. He's not very good at free time.
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