Anna Bristow

You meet someone, sparks slip around,

and before you know it you're falling

against his front door,

not even making it into his bedroom

to screw and be screwed.

You move into a new apartment

and the first thing you decide to fix

are the loose and missing screws holding the handles

of those stickily-white-painted pre-war cabinets.

Standing in a narrow hardware store aisle,

musty old glue smell confusing you,

the old Orthodox Jewish owner helps

pick out the right size.

Sitting on your kitchen floor,

you tip them out of the small paper bag.

They tinkle, metal against tile, rolling away,

and you chase them down on your knees.

And let's not talk of

what happens when the rent

of that new apartment, and that

momentarily magical man

become too much to handle.

"Screw this," you say, as,

back against that door,

down on the floor again,

you realize that you're screwed.

Anna Bristow

Steaming puddles,

glossy with faceted colors,

hide potholes

for ankles to sink into.

Those in large element-proof vehicles

laugh at the frustrated pedestrians—

unpleasantly soaked,

no longer thinking

how pretty the oil-

slicks make the

pock-marked street look.

As oversized tires splash past,

passersby look into the tinted windows,

and jump farther back on the sidewalk,

with spatters on their slickers.

Anna Bristow is a freelance editor and has an MA in English from Fordham University. Her poetry has been published in several online journals, including The Pregnant Moon Review, and Flask and Pen, as well as included in the anthology Names in a Jar: A Collection of Poetry by 100 Contemporary American Poets, available from She is also an Assistant Poetry Editor for the literary journal 42opus. She currently lives in Brooklyn with her boyfriend, cat, and ever-expanding collection of books.

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