Steven Ray Smith
I walked in and expressed no opinion at all and no
one stared at me or said anything or looked at
me or slid a chair apart or scrunched inward on herself to avoid
the Casimir effect of two legs too close or gulped
air and held his breath in counterpoint against
my big aspiration to avoid inhaling my big expiration or doused
his hands in alcohol sanitizer after touching
the water pitcher handle after me or rolled
her eyes when the ice splashed
my glass which splashed my notepad or kicked
away the wet napkin I dropped at her pumped
feet after wiping up the droplets off my instructions or tried
to give me corrections as if I were catachrestic.
No, no one.
Like so, I heard them soundly thinking, please fold
your arms and withdraw.
The poetry of Steven Ray Smith has appeared in The Yale Review, Southwest Review, The Kenyon Review, Slice, Pembroke Magazine, Grain, Aethlon: The Journal of Sport Literature, Stoneboat, Puerto del Sol and others. New work is forthcoming in First Class Literature. He lives in Austin with his wife and children.
>> Back to Issue 20, 2017