How close up to someone do you have to be to realize they are 25, single, and do not shave their legs on a regular basis?


Think of me

It feels good to wish you happiness

I feel you push it right back to me

Like ping pong

Or a trampoline

Or the resistance of my mattress when I press against it

When I wish you happiness, I know you wish it for me, too

As you wander the world, looking for things to impress an artsy peace core chick,

Pause for a Melissa thing or two

Take a minute and miss me

I’m here, too

sexually frustrated

I cannot let on

“I don’t know how old you are, don’t take this the wrong way, but you are very wise,” he said to me, awkwardly confessing to me, in a way I’ve always known to mean: I want to fuck you and feel uncomfortable about it.

“It’s fine, I want to fuck you, too!” I wanted to shout back. I wanted to make him comfortable, let him know it’s mutual, let him into my head where I fawn over him, yet where I watch him whince when I tease him, overanalyze him: a symptom of my obsession, his quirks are all so cute to me.

He hasn’t let on yet that I am so warm to him. I can’t let on to him that I am so warm. I want him to know, we’re in the same place, with a wink or accidental bump, a physical connection of meaning. I want to jump him mid meeting. I will not jump him. I will not let on. I cannot let on.


A night in New York

I was in town for just a couple days. It was dark and the road was shiny with wetness from an earlier rain. I was running between plans, cramming much into a couple days, trying not to be late to meet my boyfriend’s friends. It was a little east in the East Village, a little past where I usually find myself. The street was a little quieter, a little calmer than the ones engulfing it. You walked right up to me, also alone, eager to see me, like a dream, out of years of the abyss, I appeared. I saw me through your eyes, through the director’s eyes. You were eager to catch up, tell me about yourself, who you are today, on this night. You insisted we meet up later if I ended up going out. Last I heard, you were dating a supermarket heir and had developed a red head fetish.

It was good to see you out and alive. I worry about you a little less now.


Charm of my life

It must have been a book I read, around age 12 or 13, in which a necklace charm became a focal point for adoration, sparkling in the sun, when the story’s heartthrob glanced at the story’s sexy, confident protagonist. Throughout the book, a constant in an ever moving montage of the protagonist’s best moments, game-winning soccer goals, aced math tests, and movie outings with a giggling group of friends. That necklace was always there, always glistening around her neck. I think it was a thin, corny chapter book, designed to teach the reader SAT words in a fun context.

I adopted the bumble bee as my charm. I selected one smithed in rose gold to balance the yellow hues in my olive skin. I resolved to wear it every day until it became my signature, until the charm became a focal point for a charming admirer. Then I could move on to other necklaces.

I waited years and years, my neck locked in a tall castle tower of my own making, the clasp to unlock it gathering dust.

One day, he asked me about the necklace. He asked and received my practiced and prepared response; I’d told the story many times before about how “miel,” the Spanish for honey, shares a common etymology with Melissa, Greek for honey bee. It went swimmingly; his face was the picture of love: slowly settling into a warm expression, like rich, European butter spread over steaming toast, finding its place in the air bubbles and crevices to lie itself down and rest; the moment gloriously checking an item off my fate-list. All I ever wanted was a response like that.