Poetry by Steve Orth

I Am Me, A Small Woodland Creature, and Subway Employee

I am me, a small woodland creature,
sniffing bark to see if the berries are ripe.
I wear a beautiful furry pelt,
even though I don’t need to wear any clothes,
but I have desires to express myself
and attract other woodland creatures
and other non-woodland creatures.
because of other desires.
Where do I live?
I live in a hollowed-out tree
that cost a thousand dollars a month.
And three days a week I walk into town
where I work part-time at Subway
making sandwiches.
It’s a very lonely job,
when some people walk in and see me, a small woodland creature
they get embarrassed and don’t order sandwiches.
At first, I feel rejected, but then I’m like it’s cool.
I’m glad they walk out, because I hate working
I mean it’s the worst right?
Some guy walks in and wants a meatball sub
and I’m just supposed to make it for him?
Like what the fuck is that?
I’m a small woodland creature.
I’m not even sure if I’m legally employable.
So, yeah, I do like it when
people don’t order food from me.
that means there’s more lunchmeat
and lettuce for me to take home
and I am happy to sit and chew,
resting in tall grass, watching the birds
fly over my head.
Hi birds! I hope you can see me
I hope you love my pelt.
You should tell me if you do.

Let My Crocs Rot in the Sun

I was covered with a liquid, especially water
a gazelle too fragile to meditate,
a professor who caught lice in small claims court.
I arrived with a misleading neckline,
desperate for toast and nori,
hellbent on riding
the correct horse correctly,
letting my Crocs rot in the sun.
Let us be drunk
on the sickest riffs to be played by a flute
reimagined, with skin and intelligence.
I remember how you embraced me
and together, the lover and I
bring the freshest fruit salad you can imagine
to our beautiful friends
who play in a circle in the shallow end.

On the BART Train to Pittsburg Bay Point

I command you to recognize my shiny stuff
to read my leaflet
to pour purple slush into my chalice
to cast me in a sitcom about cults
to separate noises from sounds
to recommend the perfect credit score
to boss around my caretaker
to pantomime an omen
to freeze my gourmet raspberries
to perform surgery on a zebra
to invite me to an all-night art party
where everyone wears a hemp necklace.
to transport my parents to the forest
to google the phrase glazed meat”
to let me cry in your lap
on the BART train to Pittsburg Bay Point

Steve Orth

IG: @steve.orth

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