I studied with Billy Collins July 2013 in the Southampton Writers Conference on Long Island. I live with my husband, three children and two orange cats in Buffalo, NY where I teach creative writing and composition at Erie Community College. When I'm not running, I'm writing. My two chapbooks include My Daughter Wears Her Evil Eye to School (The Writer's Den, 2015) and Chamber Music (Finishing Line Press, 2013).
The American Way
Come on, let’s go to the greasy spoon,
over by the airport, her father motions.
She imagines a cow jumping over the moon,
a dish darting away with a spoon (dipped in lard),
tags along anyway because it’s Saturday.
Her day to be daddy’s little girl, to be reminded
of her chestnut-eyes-and-chestnut-hair.
Maybe she’s pretty on Saturdays.
She finds her very own swivel stool to spin,
meets Big Dan The Man behind the counter
who tells her his secret for the best burger
she ever ate or ever will. I pat a little butter
on the bun. All eyes dash to the tiny idiot box,
Why can’t they hold onto that football?
They must have butter fingers, Dan winks.
Sipping her loganberry, pretending to understand.
Nowadays, her father shouldn’t eat what
they serve at greasy spoons but does anyway.
He craves a stool to twist and turn,
easy talk, a solitary jukebox, flavors of his day.
Pivoting on the stool, ordering his cheeseburger,
Wonder if I should have gone over or under?
She hears the clicking of heart pills in his breast pocket,
reaches for her loganberry, tasting exactly the same.
©2016 Lisa Wiley
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