REVENGE FANTASY As I am soft--fearing the many-prismed violence of retribution--my thoughts never become more than a picture. I once had a lover who refused to commit. After a night together, I'd scratch around in his mustard smell, neglect my friends, and return to the dank bed too soon. I couldn't admit he could do better and often did: feelings all over my face, my body draped in desperation's loose robe. As always, spoiling led to avoidance, but who did the spoiling? Yes, I indulged his whims, but he turned my body to an overripe plum. Is here where the sages suggest humility, acceptance? I was always the libertine, bathing in wine and drama, open-mouthed. Now, twenty years after, he and I both married to others, my fantasy is he simply remain himself. And true enough, a Facebook post shows him in New York at one in the morning: dim lanterns at a Japanese bar, many carafes of sake. A pouty blonde seated too close, his lit eyes half-mast. Someone unthinking has taken the photo, posted it to his page-- the moldering green of his marriage already at the edges. Comeuppance indeed a sticky sweet buzz. But self-righteousness is a hard little crown to balance, and I close the page.
Liz Robbins's third collection, Freaked, won the 2014 Elixir Press Annual Poetry Award, judged by Bruce Bond; her second collection, Play Button, won the 2010 Cider Press Review Book Award, judged by Patricia Smith. Her poems have recently appeared in American Literary Review, Beloit Poetry Journal, Denver Quarterly, Kenyon Review Online, and The Paris-American. She's an associate professor of creative writing at Flagler College in St. Augustine, Florida.