Nancy’s calling after ten again,
which means she is not fine,
after being largely copacetic through last year.
I can’t come running like I used to. No good.
I’m sorted out, I like this milieu
and those evenings
produced confusing mornings
when I didn’t have someone special,
when Nancy was a single phase
electric breaker, poised
to trip off on a jolt of voltage.
She says, Now I’m voicemail?
on the voicemail, like it’s raining
always where she’s calling from,
like she’s caught conducting lightning,
and thought I’d be the ground
to pass the charge on to,
stray blue spark
past my self-imposed curfew.
Todd Mercer won the first Woodstock Writers Festival’s Flash Fiction contest. His chapbook, Box of Echoes, won the Michigan Writers Cooperative Press contest and his digital chapbook, Life-wish Maintenance, is forthcoming from RHP Books. Mercer’s poetry and fiction appear in journals such as The Camel Saloon, Camroc Press Review, and The Legendary.