APPARENTLY, I’M NOT A JOINER
When I asked if she was planning on attending
the manager’s complementary Bar-B-Q,
she said she hadn’t decided yet. It was to be held
in the little gazebo at the south end of the hotel,
just across from the swamp. “Are you?”
she asked, then answered her own question
with, “Of course, you’re not. You’re not a joiner.”
The elevator door opened, she walked out
and I stood there. The door closed and the elevator
headed for the third floor. The door opened
at the third floor. It stayed open a few seconds,
then it closed. The elevator returned to the first floor.
Some strangers got on. They smiled at me,
so I smiled at them. They got off on the second floor.
I stayed on. The elevator went up to the third floor.
A man got on with a suitcase. He didn’t smile at me,
so I didn’t smile at him. He got off on the first floor.
This went on for a while until I got self-conscious.
I rode to my floor, went to my room and closed the door.
I locked the door. I unlocked it, then locked it
again. I listened closely and appreciated
the subtle music of that sound.
CHRISTOPHER CITRO lives in Syracuse, NY, and his poetry appears or is forthcoming in Third Coast, Salamander, Quarter After Eight, Cream City Review, Los Angeles Review, Southeast Review, The Minnesota Review, Verse Daily, and elsewhere. Recent poetry broadsides are available from Architrave Press, Broadsided, and Thrush Press. He has taught creative writing at Indiana University and the Martha’s Vineyard Institute of Creative Writing. His poetry has twice been featured on Verse Daily, and his awards include the 2006 Langston Hughes Creative Writing Award for Poetry and the Darrell Burton Fellowship in Creative Writing. He is currently completing an MFA in poetry at Indiana University.