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There is a kind of friendship
that isn’t really friendship that
involves the placid holding of the
coat of one’s who cool and
playing pool.

There is a kind of romance
that isn’t really romance that
requires passive listening while
the player of the cool recounts
the lovers and the stalkers that
she’s fooled, they are ridiculous,
and all you have to do—in fact,
that’s all you’d better do—
is nod your head.

There is a kind of breakdown
of relationship that isn’t where
the player who pretends that he
fears nothing packs his toys and
slams the doors with huffy noise
and calls the holders of the coats
and all the stalkers that he bitched
about, deciding after all that
they’re his friends.

There is a kind of nothing
more to say and do that frees
the mind to glance behind and
learn that no one is a coat rack
and there’s no such thing as
cooler than, and any time
we think we’re here to teach
another lessons, we’ve a
dunce in our own classroom
made for one.


© Elaine Stirling, 2013