SM Stubbs


An email in my spam folder
has a suspicious subject line:
"Fast Sex With a Callow Girl."
Obviously a scam but this one sounds
like it came from a 50s pulp novel
where a dame with gams weeps me into bed
and next thing I know I'm waking up
under a Tijuana sunrise,
my head split open like blue agave.
The word callow has a raw, sophisticated feel,
as if this mystery gal would teach me
how to bend myself at impossible angles—
which is why I'm careful
around language. Callow means
inexperienced, immature. Naïve, even.
Young, even. I have a feeling
the guy who sent this email has a bag
full of stolen credit cards and drives a van
lined with worn shag carpet.
He certainly isn't callow—he's callous,
indifferent to anyone else’s misery.
In the scenario proposed, I arrive at midnight
outside a dingy, drab motel and end up
rabbit-punched in the gullet, gasping
on the floor between stained twin beds.
Gullet means esophagus and throat
but also means the gap between
a saw's teeth. That's the place
I find myself: that hollow where
every moment feels like a threat, where
I might or might not get cut,
an open space where blood pools
before it spills out over everything.