by Cait Weiss Orcutt

Look, if it’s raining or snowing or too hot or muggy, misting or gleaming, slick-sidewalked, hail-stoned, all our plans are made to be wine-checked. We meet Bobby Flay at his place, the one never featured on Mangia Mangia TV and here comes the Meat Man, sweat pooled in the tub of his back under a two-hundred dollar dress shirt, tailored, French-cuffed, and that must be the Fish Man following suit, scales flying up like knife cuts as he walks in the room, jacket perfect from the last trip to the old country. We’re hungry, but it’s too shameful to be something so needy, so we drink Chablis and Chablis and sexualize oysters slinking down our long necks. Now it’s a blizzard outside, a heat wave, a hurricane. Now it’s an earthquake, four horsemen, some locusts or frogs. The ground ruptures and now it’s a dozen silver slick Bluepoints, Kumamotos, Pemaquid, Malpeques, twelve years in the rubble, everything shucked out and swallowed. Now, the worst part, it’s Now-now. Now, with bad weather constantly, the city dammed with tabby: lime, water, sand, ash, the decanted ghost of you.

Cait Weiss Orcutt’s work has appeared in Boston ReviewChautauquaFIELD, and others. Her manuscript VALLEYSPEAK (Zone 3, 2017) won Zone 3 Press’ 2016 First Book Award, judged by Douglas Kearney. Cait has an MFA from The Ohio State and is pursuing her Ph.D. in Poetry at the University of Houston.

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