other than water but the stocker stops me before I can reach the rows of carbonated water in the back, tells me how hours are cut and she cannot help everyone, and they cannot keep everything in stock, and she cannot run the front of the store and stock the shelves, she is only one person, and I think I feel this and say I’m so sorry. I buy citrus tea that I will not drink, come home and light the warm vanilla candle so I can feel warmth, relief, comfort, etc. and the reflection of the flame flickering in the window catches my attention. I clench my jaw and turn to make sure the bookcase is not on fire.
Lindsey is a Pushcart and Best of the Net nominated writer with work in X-R-A-Y, Pithead Chapel, Emrys Journal Online and more. She is the author of poetry chapbook GOLDEN HOUR MINUS THE GLOW (Between Shadows Press, 2021) and lives with her daughter in Upstate South Carolina. Find her online at https://r3dwillow.wixsite.com/rydanmardsey or on Twitter: @rydanmardsey.