Here are a couple poems I’ve been tinkering with over the years.

The Best Sunscreen for Your Face

is SPF

Let’s Spend

the Summer

Inside.

I could prescribe

a wealth

of misinformation,

the distance between

my heart and what

graces the page.

Last night I fell

head over heels

over my bike

on the way home

from a restaurant

job, ended

up spending

what I made

in eight hours

in thirty minutes

on band-aids, watch

repair, my bike.

There’s no such thing

as a free lunch,

as serving brunch

with a bandaged hand

to immaculate men

and women who ask

my name, What happened

to your hand?

When they leave

they leave

twenty percent,

nearly always.

I can’t complain

about the order

the world

has written down

for me on its pad.

I used to get mad

at people

for falling prey

to advertising, not

at the advertisements.

This morning I read

Never mind what happens

outside the window

of personal triumph

in the reflection

of a seven-year-old’s

Ray-Ban sunglasses.

His mother was blonde,

eurocentric and god.

I told her everything,

told her this

in earnest —

I will only profit

when there’s nothing

left to think

to want to buy.

_________________________________

Poem with Tasteful Tan Lines

(after Petter Lindgren)

Stephanie is twenty-two

and the pearls encircling

her neck are no match

for silken skin which

emanates a radiance

that could stem only

from a diet rich

in essential oils, jarred

water infused with

asparagus, sold for six

dollars at Whole Foods.

Stephanie’s mentioned

in her Tinder profile

that her hobbies include

testing out the amount

of tacos she can stuff

in her mouth in a sitting

& playing twenty questions

with her Uber Drivers.

Stephanie’s photos feature

Stephanie wearing white

friends draped across

her arms in beachfront

haunts; six languid smiles

betray the existential

boredom which must

accompany having parents

in upper tax brackets, leg-

acies who’ve owned

the same swathe

of summer homes

for decades. Stephanie

attends Cornell & while

her classes are taught

by esteemed faculty

who too have attended

similar schools, she’s not

yet learned nor been

taught the tenets

of insidiousness, that

it’s bad to treat gig

workers like playthings,

who dance for money

even though that’s

not far from true.

Still I fancy

imagining Stephanie

standing atop

heated marble

bathroom tiles

in a well-furnished

Murray Hill apartment,

owned by a family friend

& rented to Stephanie

for six hundred a month —

Stephanie staring placidly

in a fog-resistant mirror

while she fixes her hair

into a long & painful plait,

while dreaming of beaches

(or nothing), Saint-Tropez.

Essays by me, the Egg God. I am on Twitter at @sweeteggperson

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