today was the kind of day

that shoves a porcupine in your

guts. it split your ears

while screaming out of register. A bear

is pressing your shoulders down, scratching

its furry, rough back on

you until you’re forced to

press to the ground. your

voice is muffled because a bat is enfolding

your tongue. today is too cautious

to ask for help. it

gave you these animals to care for

and you’ve so far

been okay with keeping them at bay. but

you can admit mid-morning,

there’s a window of relief when

you can step back. take a

seat. and when you take a sip,

the coffee is still hot.

Alana Schwartz

English teacher by trade, story writer for fun

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