Today felt unbreakable.
It was the first time I
Stole something (bagel),
Smoked a cigarette (menthol),
Drank a beer (lager),
Tripped a teacher (Latin),
Kissed someone I shouldn’t (Her).

Tonight feels warm under the bed.
It is the first time I
Study the floor (Dad’s),
The rocker marks (Dad’s),
The ragged carpet (Dad’s),
Littered with potato chips, bike parts, the dog’s toenails and
The voices rearing up next door (Dad’s).

To these (rough hard edges)
I belong.

Anney E. J. Ryan is an English adjunct currently living on the Pennsylvania Turnpike. Her work has been featured in The Kenyon Review, Post Road Magazine, Shoofly, and The Philadelphia Inquirer.