Terrible Things

Nicole Callihan

Eva says it would be a good idea for her to eat all the sugar in the world because then she won’t want any more sugar, so we go to the deli, and I buy her all the sugar in the world, and we sit on the kitchen floor and eat it, but it’s like that time I was in college and decided if I smoked a carton of cigarettes, I wouldn’t want cigarettes anymore, but I got like eight packs in, and they were still so good, every single drag, fucking amazing, so I decided to go back to just smoking like a regular sorority girl, which was supposed to be under a roof with my legs crossed, but I’d forget, and walk in the streets in the rain. Last night, after the open mic, I left my beautiful umbrella in the bar, and once, I slept with a man so I could stop being friends with him, too intense, I told him, but mostly I don’t do terrible things, mostly I’m fairly decent, though I do sort of fantasize about kissing my podiatrist, except today, because he sawed these warts off my right foot yesterday, and I have been limping around, and in such pain, making these pathetic cat sounds, and then looking around like, did you hear that?, and no one will eat a cheeseburger with me, but that’s okay, because I just ordered one that I will eat alone before going home to watch bad TV.


Nicole Callihan’s books include SuperLoop (Sockmonkey Press 2014), and the chapbooks: A Study in Spring (2015), The Deeply Flawed Human (2016), Downtown (2017), and Aging (2018). Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Tin House, Sixth Finch, Painted Bride Quarterly, The American Poetry Review, and as a Poem-a-Day selection from the Academy of American Poets. Her latest project, Translucence, a dual-language, cross-culture collaboration with Palestinian poet Samar Abdel Jaber, was released by Indolent Books in 2018.

%d bloggers like this: