The Empire Tight Building

An opportunity to take a picture with an icon,
but that little boy would rather be anywhere else.

On the corner of famous Fifth Ave.
all the eager tourists break their necks
to capture the tower.

But not this kid.

“Smile!” encourages Mom.

He throws a glare away from her,
fists jammed in his pockets,
a scowl slapped on his face.

She snaps the picture anyway.

Once the tallest building in the world,
but at this moment –the tightest building in the world.

Weekly Meeting Notes

The Editor and I sit across from the VP in her sunny office.
I smooth out my skirt, cross my legs, and place my notebook on my lap.
I definitely look the part of Editor-in-the-making.

A quick glance.

The Editor has crossed her legs too.
This is how a good editor sits I think to myself.

She shares her thoughts on the manuscript we’re here to discuss.
I listen.
This is how a good editor listens.

The Editor is eloquent.
Each word flawlessly swan dives out of her mouth,
and summersaults onto the VP’s desk like a secret agent.
They gather and begin building a structure –her opinion on the manuscript;
a point of view so clear and concise it’s tangible.

I’m in awe.
This is how a good editor speaks.

I’m asked to share next.

Reluctantly, I speak.
Tiny words fall out of my mouth
in a hurried frenzy like
my ideas are a fire in the back of my throat
that should be escaped, not expressed.
My words hurtle toward the floor,
with no point to make,
no structure to build,
no parachutes.
I can almost hear them helplessly colliding with the carpet.
splat splat splat splat splat.

Sensing the absence of point from my view,
the VP’s eyes drift off.
I shut my mouth, extinguishing my idea-fire and
look down at the small pile of mangled letters
next to my shoe.

I feel a stab of pain behind my crossed knee.
I uncross my legs.

A quick glance.

The Editor’s legs are still crossed.

I’m not a good editor…yet.