I want to disentangle the image I see of me,

anger parked behind my teeth

like a tire on top of the curb –

the loud, gritty crunch

of asphalt enamel twisting under the weight of it,

crouched on the tip of my tongue,

a tile tiger propped against the wall,

an art deco mural: The Splendor of Rage.

from what you see:

busy weekend grocery store,

a mother with children in tow

directing traffic with tired hands,

reasoning with the list and the purse and the mommy-I-wants and

the squeaking wheel on the cart

that pulls like magic your eyes to mine,

curls of hair, unwashed, unbrushed

batter at yesterday’s mask

and you clear the air.

One long look from the tips of my work boots

to the emptiness in my eyes

and I see a light that could proposition a nun.

I see a light that could be the very death of this life.

I see a light that I know is temptation

and this isn’t a desert,

it’s a goddamn Food Lion.

And I am tempted.

I am wanted.

I am seen.

I am.

© Laura A. Lord, 2021

Thank you to MindLoveMisery for the prompt.

3 responses to “Seen”

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