“Going out” is a broad expression,
and a girl’s gotta eat, gotta
have milk to drink. Maybe your grandmother
suffered from osteoporosis. Maybe
that’s her bracelet. Your gaze
floats from the window, superimposed
on the evening’s glittering
currents (motor vehicle collisions:
number one cause of accidental death):
you don’t look like you could know
the meaning of shrinking skirts,
eyes made ‘smoky’—yours insubstantial,
rippling in glass like some nocturnal
fume, palpable, even from the sidewalk.
Looking back at those 24/7
automatic doors, bright and completely
legible. No one can see you
sneaking glances at the revellers’
reflections, searching for someone you might know, finding
only me, my hands weighed down
with shopping bags and an old-fashioned
talisman on my wrist.
Carolyn Nakagawa is a Vancouver-based poet and playwright whose poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Qwerty, The Maynard, Ricepaper, and The Allegheny Review. She is a recent graduate of the University of British Columbia with a major in English literature and a minor in Asian Canadian studies.