Plea to Great-Grandmother

︎︎︎︎︎ Jiv Johnson

︎ July 3, 2023

Luminaries eating gold candy bars outside my window still ask about my dreams and O., if you’re there—I don’t know how to speak at Them. The cymbals on my timeline finally thrashing to me. Hot black asphalt, red canvas sneakers. Blue gowns and a sweaty handshake while the family watches. “Struggling lately,” I say to eight golden wings. The most ornate set sighs instead of speaking and it’s always disappointing walking out to the store. O., I still deepen my pores plucking at blackheads. Eczema on my eyelids. Always scratching. When the sky opens in Astoria, the swamp whites outside flash their green leaves down at me. Hot black asphalt, ornate sandals, swamp white oaks, and groceries. You’d have hated walking through a city in summer. Behind me, leather kicking up street pebbles. I know the handcrafted straps are clinging tight. The four of Them, pushing me along the sidewalk like a boulder. From Fullness, can’t they call in the drones, can’t they call in the tanks? Where’s the exegesis on being 26? Did you keep your white hair or are you 26 there? Like Saul, I’m all sick with envy every second. Been wanting a lot of synthetic fruit and plug-in luxuries. Different roof, even. At the store, the four ask if I’m riding in the shopping buggy and I’m all torn up about it.

Jiv Johnson is an accountant from Kentucky. He currently resides in New York City. He has a father, a mother, and a brother.