2020 Uncategorized Comments (0) 1013

Published in Nasty Women Poets: An Unapologetic Anthology of Subversive Verse


Before I leave I stack up the coffee cups, brush
the crumbs into a neat pile, ball up the napkins,
stuff the sugar packets into place then remember
I’m not a waitress anymore, not faceless anymore,
not one of millions of women in white shirts, black pants,
black shoes, white aprons, serving up phony smiles behind
six cups of coffee stacked to the sky, three small salads
balanced up the arm, side of fries held in place by a pinky,
bottle of ketchup perched against a shoulder, taking a drink order,
a dessert order, an order from the manager and a round
of vulgarities from the “sous” chef, not spending
my two a.m.’s filling half empty salt shakers, adjusting mustard jars
next to crumpled sweet ‘n lows, not giving someone
a few more minutes anymore, not giving until
good and ready to give, waiting
until the last possible second, teetering
on the precipice between twenty percent and squat,
not sassy anymore, proud of the fact that nobody
ever claimed squatters rights in my station, nobody
ever fired me because I quit first, nobody stiffed me
and was not cursed to burn in hell for all time, not armed
with revenge anymore, ready to fill the reservation book
with bogus names, lay down on the salad bar and refuse to move,
barricade myself inside the side station, throw myself
off the steam table, die every night with my apron on

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