I. Work Dreamscape

Written by Anne Marie Ward
Art by Håkon Grimstad

Odes swabbed from my cheek, shifting between my toes, pressed up against glass so that it smudges:

  1. Work Dreamscape

WHILE present at a virtual meeting sent through an email link, which has dozens online where only 3 speak, I crave violences: (1. melty, creamy convenience store chocolate, caramel, nougat licked and sucked from salty palm creases, under dirty nails, off the inside of a crinkly, ripped wrapper nearly forgotten in the center cup-holder, all swaddled tightly in the plasticky ambiance of a very hot car. 2. Prominent purple bruises on blanched breasts distinctly shaped as individual splayed fingers round the ruddy areola. Surfacing, tender, early the next morning, hidden beneath a 27-hours-lived-in top until much later, well after leaving the subletted walk-up East Village studio [near the spindly, fruitless trees adorned year-round with blue Christmas lights woven through their branches]. 3. Limited-fund liquidation to fuck off to the Balkans without notice, rub sweet almond oils on unprotected skin (a frightening shade evolutionarily meant for locations where opportunities for Vitamin-D-synthesis are scarce), dip toes in the Adriatic, and imagine the eastern Italian coast that’s just out of my eyeshot, skin burning in hot sand. 4. Carcinoma, and a sense of safety/accomplishment, and clogged nephrons, and a spectrum of personal relationships and high A1C be damned–) bc who can bear to plan beyond the next complex 96 links of 15 mins?