- This Clean Bare Plane
The hot dogs were revolvingin time to “Free Fallin”’and the line at the 7-Elevenkept growing until it ranall the way backto the pickles in plastic sacs,the triangular sandwichesin the cooler lined uplike Giotto’s angels.With no clerksat the counter,Tom Petty sang,It’s a long dayliving in Reseda.Then the stockroom door exploded.A girl came first,eyes not meeting our eyes,saying, Fuck, fuck, fuck,and took her placeat the register,baby fat in her faceout of placeabove the motherly linesof her red polyester smock.She was followed by a little man,who was older,round all over,but not fat. [End Page 164] He never looked upas he slid bags of chipspast the electric eye,fed sheaves of lottery ticketsto the machine,and, librarian of desire,located brands of cigarettesin the stacks behind him.He never faltered,as if he saw the yearsbefore him and behind himand had decidedto let the fluorescent light,the music he had to listen tobut didn’t choose,flow right through him,his glasses reflecting the glare. [End Page 165]
Annie Woodford teaches English at Virginia Western Community College in Roanoke, VA. Her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in Appalachian Heritage, the Normal School, the Chattahoochee Review, Bluestem, Tar River Poetry, Tinderbox Poetry Journal, and Town Creek Poetry, among others. Her first collection of poetry was a finalist in the Unicorn Press First Book Contest.