A case of unemployment
My brother’s company asked him to leave.
They didn’t accept no, he says
from his new Bronx apartment.
I hear an ambulance on the line,
pretend there is an answer
in the silence it rescues
before asking again how long
he’ll be able to get by. I imagine
boxes not yet unpacked, cartons of “kitchen”
full of pots and lids that don’t fit,
“office” he could have sworn was full
as he searches a sea of peanut foam
until he can see the bottom. He can
last a few months, but not much longer
if the condition persists. I want to tell him
things he’s heard before in a way
that sounds less like tin and string.
I never get the chance. When he says
he has to get back to work, he hangs up
before I realize what he means.
Geoff Anderson teaches English, tutors Italian, and studies Chinese. His work has found a home in reviews such as Rust + Moth, Cider Press Review, and *82 Review.