Eyes catch mine. Lunch-line paradise your name is Mystery Neighbor. The orange seeds I’ve swallowed have chosen now to root. “Hi,” you say.

Everything changes. I learn to be who I want you to see; cigarettes, skipping, the skate park melt me like an image in candle wax. Fixed.

I begin branding my chin nightly with a hot plastic phone. An ageless sacrifice of feeling and firsts carousels me until I am too dizzy.

“I want you to show me,” said Mystery Neighbor. So, I tuck my eyes around the bedroom curtain as instructed; loving the private peep shows.

You: Tricky and a liar too. Me: Nightly showing myself and breathing to the phone. I seek vengeance, a secluded corner and you all at once.

You’d been watching yes, but showing others too. I try to fly out of my wax-lacquered skin. I know they all saw me believing in something.

I am gossip today. Criss-crossed stories and still-life faces. I’m not myself at school. Everyone stares like they know my dream last night.

© 2009 Rachel Fachner


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