Upon Missing a Dose of Effexor on Memorial Day


Anna Meister


I sleep until one. The sun

is a joke. Mom needs to go to Walmart.

I remember the hospital with all the lights

buzzing. I flip someone off

in the parking lot. Today is a holiday

for hotdogs on the grill.

Monday, the weekend extended.

I leave my keys in the ignition, car running

for an hour. I ask Did I have a stroke?

The phone just keeps ringing.

I am so alone I say to a room

of people. Family under a red umbrella

around the newly-sanded picnic table.

Group picture on the count of three,

say Summer! A pot boiled over

is me. I am so over

weakness. The damn sun.

I hate this country, its tiny flags

lining the pharmacy's sidewalk.

We all sing Edelweiss, which leads to feelings

about feelings. I tell them just listen, don't try to fix.

I feel needles here here & here.

Mom draws labyrinths to calm herself,

builds them out of forks in the yard.

My love calls me paranoid.

Rum & lemonade

because we should be celebrating

fresh mulch underfoot.

I try to follow trains of thought

as if getting time & a half.

In my fantasies, I break

plates of food on the ground,

make animal sounds.

I miss my oblong orange pill,

the daily gagging it provokes.

We can't be apart.

I'm hella codependent

in order not to die.

There are so many things I could jump from.

They get catalogued without consent.

I can't control my hands.

Even when faultless I fixate.

Are they laughing at me?

My mind moves like a lawnmower

& I sweat crescent moons.

Natural deodorant doesn't work.

I like a maze when

it's about getting to the middle.

There is nothing to fear

if there's nothing to miss.

I say I feel Bad with a capital B.

Come sit by my bedside.

Wish for darkness, but it's always after

noon now. I look up

hours of operation. Remember

when I didn't go outside? No more

my sickness unspoken. I am

alive with it. I have to be

explicit in order to be seen.