February 13 – the rhythm of little things

February 17, 2022


Natalie Mix

Lorelei on a Facetime call on her break at work Sunday morning

there’s a tub of speckled pink cookie dough cooling in my fridge,

paper bags full of baked goods from Meijer waiting on my kitchen counter,

a blue dinosaur stuffed animal, a Dollar Tree greeting card, and some Cadbury eggs piled up on my estate sale couch


today was indefinable in a way,

best described by all the little things,

by the click-clack of my keyboard as i type and backspace to the beat of my own indecision


the valentines I made out of paint chips from Walmart,

the total on the pizza order we placed, memorialized by the receipt taped to the fridge,

the old lady who told me i was cute at work this morning,

discussing the future and our new dress code,

not wanting to leave after i’d clocked out,

Egyptian Licorice tea in my new mug,

folding laundry and washing dishes and ringing customers up—rhythms to fall blessedly into


i felt today, for the first time in a while

that i fit the space i was meant to,

tethered to something critical at the center of the earth


i’d like to think it’s my words tethering me;

these poems themselves have been a rhythm to fall into,

and i don’t think i want to see them go,

i think i’ll hold onto them a while longer;

they’ve taught me something,

taught me that my words unfold and untangle the knots that the day ties with every word I didn’t speak


so here’s the rhythm, 

the beat,

the music i’ve set my life to:

a handful of pills and a poem at night,

a blueberry bagel and an iced coffee in the morning,

silent prayers and texts to friends in the in between,

and lately, the girl in the mirror has surprised me,

flourishing because she’s actually found a watering can;

she’ll be eighteen soon—

i’ll be eighteen soon

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