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by Cheryl Hicks

we danced for a while, then sat down and talked
that was five years ago

talking can make me uncomfortable

some men don't really like to talk
they just pretend

it just depends on the situation

I really have a self-destructive knack
an instinct for men who are emotionally unavailable

to me

some things you just feel in your bones

it's sort of the same thing with surfing

and if he has the sort of mouth I love

you know how it is

wide and full lipped
most of the time

I'm not scared of even a six foot wave

I can almost feel them on my body

but before you know it
it just doesn't feel right anymore
and you can end up in a bad situation

before you know it
I find myself tumbling around in a carnal clinch

things really get heated up
then the clouds suddenly change
and the winds turn onshore

it can be a real blow to realize

the waves can get bad really fast

it's three in the morning
and all you want to do is get out

and that's it for the season

it hurts

it really blows

it really hurts

and the only thing left to do
is get out

of course he blamed me

it's confusing
to feel a sense of obligation

I even blamed myself a little
it's just that men have an unfair advantage

it's just that some women are
a little more aggressive
a little faster, a little more restless

I would guess
that he's slept with more than a hundred women

and it's such a sacred, intimate act

it must hurt to have sex so many times

sometimes I wonder
if there's anything to all that mystical stuff

sometimes I almost have trouble breathing

you know
the breathing
and chanting

like I've been thrown against the rocks by a giant wave
and broken into fifty pieces

I wish things could be different

I wish things could be different

it's just that I always feel

I don't know

like a better wave is over the horizon

I should probably just take up a hobby
like surfing or something

About the author:
I have had prose published in
The First Line and Southern Hum, and one of my memoirs "The Goat Story" is to be included in The Remembrance Project at Howard University. My poems have been published in Urban Spaghetti, Blue Fifth Review, Heliotrope, Makar, Snakeskin, Her Circle, Creative Soup, The Orphan Leaf Review, the delinquent, Autumn Sky Poetry, Silent Actor, Avatar Review and 103: The Journal of the Image Warehouse. I have been a featured poet at C/Oasis, am a previous recipient of the Paddock Poetry Award and presented poems from my series titled Conversations with the Virgin at the 2006 Rocky Mountain Modern Language Association Conference in Tucson, Arizona.

I currently teach photography and creative writing at the secondary level and am also a visual artist. My mixed media canvases have been shown across Texas and in New York, and my work is showcased at the Image Warehouse in Athens, Texas.

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Midnight Picnic
a novel by
Nick Antosca


The Suburban Swindle

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