I am ten years old & I hear that Ashley is outside
laying in the street again. When I say to her,
Ashley, you can’t do that, you’ll get run over
She responds, yeah, I know, I just don’t care
I am barefoot, holding my shoes in my hand
& I am not concerned. I think that perhaps she’s
kidding. I tell Ashley that if you see a car coming
towards you, you should step out of the way.
Ashley says if a car is coming towards you,
you gotta scream till it hits its brakes. She is
laughing. At home they tell me I shouldn’t play
with neighborhood kids, not unless we know their parents,
& especially not any kids that laugh about laying in the
street. My mom starts saying things like, if Ashley
jumped off a cliff, would you? I guess I wouldn’t.
So I don’t. They say the police found a lone torso
in the wash near our house. I am not supposed
to hang outside the house anymore but now when
Ashley comes outside to lay in the street,
no one can tell her to stop.
No one will even bring her a blanket.
Nymphish is a contemporary poet from Phoenix, AZ. She received her first publication from Creative Communications when she was sixteen, and has since completed her debut poetry collection, Seventh Street Sad. She is currently very active in the art, music, and poetry scenes surrounding Phoenix. She has two cats, Coraline and Arrietty, and they both look the same.