ugly/beauty


#1 the girl in front of me at the Shopper’s Drug Mart has a spine that curves into a comma. she’s a hip hitcher.


#2 the woman in front of me in the Starbuck’s line’s lower face has contracted into her neck, evidence of old burns. once red, now white. she wears a single, worn, leather glove. her hand curls around her drink. sipping, she smiles into her neck.


#3 the man seated next to me at Starbuck’s berates his wife for her desire to stop at a National Park in the USA on their road trip to Colorado next month. “i just want to relax. why do you have to complicate my holiday?” their son makes a long, complicated joke to cut the tension. the man laughs begrudgingly, but the woman appears worried.


#4 the woman seated on the other side of me at Starbuck’s skypes on speaker phone. “do you love me?” she bluntly asks her lover. there is no answer. then she asks again in Tagalog. again, no answer. the women argue over monies sent to family in California and how nothing in life is free. then the woman on the screen says, “but i washed your jeans,” and the woman in Starbuck’s doesn’t answer. her sneakered foot jiggles the table, over and over.


#5 overhead, Amy Shark’s song ‘Adore’ plays.