the last days at work.

by epi

walk in, nodding to well-known strangers.
they know your name and maybe
where you live and every once in
a while, they stop you to ask about
your ex, or if you’re excited about the
next place. good, yes you say& how are
you and is your husband feeling better?
good & yes. the next few seconds are
filled with fumbling both of you trying
to remember anything else you know before
conceding defeat, before deciding that
next time you’ll keep your head down
and they’ll pretend not to see you.

except, there is no next time is there?

so just as quickly as you decided otherwise,
you say that next time, you’ll listen when
they talk about their husbands and grand-
children and their fight to lose those pesky
pounds they’ve picked up over the years.
you promise to miss no opportunity,
next time.

except, there is no next time,
is there?