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Saturday, April 06, 2019


by Skaidrite Stelzer

Too hard to say the exact words,
the exacting words.
How a hand can be placed on a shoulder;
the sudden shudder of his breath in my hair.
Because I don’t know him really,
a stranger,
and I don’t like men creeping up behind me.
Because they can’t see my face,
they may feel they are gentlemen,
they may think me too sensitive,
easy to melt,
Easy to melt with my mouth closed,
tongue removed,
unless his in my ear.
Such close whispering meant
only to reassure me
and the chorus arising,
What is the risk?
I remember the man
who followed me home one night
from the laundromat
and I did not mind it.
But another night
he came in accidentally.
My accident, not locking the door.
There is often something more
to the story.
If you want to touch me,
at least look me straight
in the face.

Skaidrite Stelzer lives and writes in Toledo, Ohio.  Growing up as a post-war refugee and displaced person, she feels connected to the world and other stray planets.  Her poetry has been published in Fourth River, Eclipse, Glass, Baltimore Review, and many other literary journals as well as TheNewVerse.News.