Cajun Mutt Press featured Writer 06/19/19



lovers lie back to back
in a dark bedroom
a foot of bedsheet between them
his and hers phones aglow

mom and dad
sit on the sofa
swiping and tapping
oblivious of the bouncing toddler
jingling dad’s keys
in their faces

a woman
in a black teddy
exits the bathroom
leans seductively against
the door jamb
as he stiffens inside his boxers
while gazing at her more obedient
and relatable facsimile
in the palm of his hand

we shake our heads
sadly at these sins
then commit them ourselves

i can only conclude
that we’ve finally found
what we’ve been looking for

a way to avoid each other
a way not to deal
with each other’s
needs and demands
and all the bullshit sob stories
self deceptions
and self pity

a way not to listen to them bitch
about their day at work
and ramble on about the same shit
over and over

who wants that anyway?

nobody has the stomach for that anymore

break up with your girlfriend in person?
or even on the phone?

fuck that

squirm out of it
then block
so much easier
no yelling and screaming
or throwing things
having the neighbors
call the cops

fuck all this talk
of real
human connection

we want to be entertained
and distracted
as much as possible
for the hours to float by
in a pleasant haze
like any drunk
or addict

to be rid of this nasty experience
we call time
the slow screech
or unbearable silence of it
as quickly as possible
flush it like a stinking turd
then express bewilderment
on our death beds
with the standard
“where did it all go?”


wouldn’t it be ironic
if this separation
is what ultimately saves us?

we’ll all be too self absorbed
too device-bewitched
and distracted
to care enough
to fight anymore

some future president
without looking up from his phone
will say to an advisor:
“they did what?
oh…well…that’s ok
they can have it
it used to be theirs anyway…”

a war averted
through tech addiction

you never know

©Brian Rihlmann all rights reserved


Brian Rihlmann was born in NJ, and currently lives in Reno, NV. He writes mostly semi-autobiographical, confessional free verse, much of it on the so-called “grittier” side. Folk poetry…for folks. He has been published in Constellate Magazine, Poppy Road Review, and has an upcoming piece in The American Journal Of Poetry.

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