I wonder if I’ll get in trouble for this…

Family Legacy

The world so often surprise me. Just yesterday,
I went to piss at a Panera Bread, did it
the usual way: polite knock on the door, locked
it behind me, and washed my hands in the too cold water
by the soap thing that never works right while
the urinal flushed itself, a cake of disinfectant eroding
at the bottom.

Wash vigorously–used to work
at a hospital, you know–
so I had time to look around,
really take it in while my hands froze.
Paper towels where you should grasp firmly,
Two hands, not one, and pull straight
down, but if it’s an emergency, I guess
you’re supposed to turn this wheel.

I thought, “Huh, emergency feed. When
do we need towels so bad?
Is everything such a damned rush
that we can’t just use two hands,
grasp firmly, pull? Follow the damn
pictures they made so even the chinks
can do it?” I pulled, two hands–
I’m American, after all–
and left.

3 thoughts on “I wonder if I’ll get in trouble for this…

    1. It is indeed. Not sure why you commented on this first draft rather than the final version that went live today, but either way I would draw your attention to the title of the poem.

      The poem may be written in first person, but one of the important lessons of poetry is to never assume that the author is the narrator.


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