by Kenton K. Yee
A barkeep goes to her therapist, says:
I can’t sleep—hypnotize me. So you do and take her
to Central Park and fall madly in love.
She cuts tail and you’re on your couch
rifling through web pages pricing colonoscopies.
It’s hopeless. You’re mediocre. Your mother was right.
And you hear the lady in the balcony below you
screaming into a phone at her son.
No, I can’t bail you out. No, I can’t take your kids.
No, I’ve worked my tail off to afford a balcony.
Yes, I’m saving up for tail-replacement surgery.
Her tale piques you. You ask her to the zoo,
advise her to grab the tiger by the tail.
As she struggles to hang on, the tiger bares its fangs
at you. Its tail pops off and the tiger leaps,
its front claws reaching for your cheeks.
The tiger mauls you inside and out like your father did.
The next day you’re not making heads from tails
but your patients seem chipper enough.
You’re bleeding to death, they’re paying you to stay alive.
Outside, the fishes look for fallen Freudians to sleep with.
Kenton K. Yee recently placed poetry in Constellations, Plume Poetry, The Threepenny Review, Sugar House Review, Rattle, TAB Journal, The New Verse News, The Indianapolis Review, Berkeley Poetry Review, and Cutthroat: A Journal of the Arts, among others. Kenton writes from northern California