An endless stream of resumes and cover letters and company values. A million different words for teamwork.
In my sleep, I mumble introductions and elevator pitches.
Each time pen hits page it’s “since graduation…” and another unprolific declaration of my love for crafting experiences with words.
The worst of all of this is the fact that it is all true. I do love spilling myself over empty pages; it’s as easy and thoughtless as my hand hitting the wobbling plastic of my environmentally-friendly coffee cup and watching the caffeine river soak and stain. It is becoming just as frustrating, too, in the way I could spill a thousand cups and remain the only witness.
These one-sided conversations with recruiter’s email addresses and LinkedIn application portals are enough to sink my soul, but it is in these sinking moments I have to hold on to the elusive and exciting future I know must be lying just a number of months away.
I have to picture it. I have to believe in it.
What choice do I have?
and all those tiny metal Ls
the ones they give as tools for building your couch,
the same ones straightening your bedframe,
responsible for the creak your dresser drawer makes
when you lift it up an inch and open.
Maybe there will be a black plastic coffee maker too,
next to the reusable cup you clean every other use,
it holds the same caffeine and splash of milk every time.
A stack of books, half-read
a big one lying open on a coffee table,
one small enough to frame your bedside,
but you place it here,
propping up your four-dollar glass of wine
just between your arm and the TV.
Your sheets, yellow or orange, or some other bright color
open and brilliant, showing up the whole room
in the way it folds, showing the dent you leave in the shape of you,
under your burrowed pillow and twisted comforter
and that’s the perfect word: comfort.
An apartment of Chicago comfort
this second time around joy.
No car. No school. No language barrier.
But is it enough? Or will it turn into another countdown?
A brief comfort that stifles by spelling out the rest of your life.
Another small box full of everything you already know.
You know these things breathe too,
and if you let them, they will take your air
until you huff hot attic breath,
soul stored with your dreams as a relic
of everything you once could be.