by Denise Duhamel
The barista at the coffee shop is covered in tattoos.
She says there are only two ways they hold her back.
1. She can’t work at Starbucks.
2. She can’t wear a corsage, since she’d just be way too busy,
and this makes me laugh.
She says no to gifts from prom dates—the wrist corsage,
the pinned corsage; no to bridal bouquets,
the get-well-soon carnations.
One day soon her mother will insist on sympathy wreaths around her coffin,
which is closed,
lest she be confused with the flowers.