Midnight chatter of internet support groups
Technology is the new drug; Apple IVs plugged
straight into vein, smack marks faded into
I have to get drunk to have sex/
Have you tried a vibe/It’s like I’m
a giant fleshlight/We came home from honey
moon virgins/I like pot first
the anonymity of chat-rooms better than any
/Hi My name is/ You can self-diagnose as many
as you want. Addictions for everyone; Addictions like
candy. Praise all the nativity babies, Allah, and WebMD for
viral kittens, unlimited cloud storage, celebration of net
neuroses. Who needs sunlight anymore when you can
bask in the glow of i-everything?
I can’t even remember her last name.
When I moved to Laie, I knew no one.
The waves I knew from the other side
Moon-pull, salty lips, sand between toes
Always and never changing
She lived in the same hale, next door, alone.
We did the usual things
Small talk at the mail boxes, recycle junk mail
B-grade movies at the town’s one-screen
Beach walks at sunrise or set
Doing homework, once, we watched
Cheap wooden wardrobe explode
Albino specks flying blind
Pulpy wood shards
After hiking the mountain,
Pineapples shrubs, volcano rock, butterfly eggs
Waterfall swim in sports bras and bare feet
Pillows—laptop—lipstick migrated, only taped-up posters left.
I don’t remember if it was your idea
Or if it matters
Separate but Equal
She –who calls herself a feminist–
wanted to talk about the way
children play at the park:
the boys physical.
the girls afraid
of the difficult stuff.
Look at the way
they play differently.
Genders are different.
People –by people she means me–
want to make everyone the same
clearly this is a bad thing.
My son –who had been watching My Little Ponies–
interrupted. –Thank God.–
Buried under the everyday, I never asked her:
Why are our girls taught fear?
Keri Withington studied poetry as a bachelors student, earned an MA in Writing, and is now taking poetry classes while working towards a Women’s Studies graduate certificate at the University of Tennessee. Additionally, she is an English faculty member at Pellissippi State Community College, where she sponsors her campus’s creative writing club.