A Frantic Turning Around

    The absence of love must be like a frantic turn-around.

–Bernadette Mayer


Don’t let anyone tell you you are less than scared.

That’s how you really feel. I was going to die young

but now I’ll have to wait for you, honey, was a line

I heard yesterday on the radio and thought it was a line

listeners in the 18 to 25 range would go nuts for. That explains it.

The fear I’ll never write a nice line to fall in love to

usually keeps me up at night, it’s bats in the attic

becoming bats in the den. I smacked a manila

envelope over an open air vent, and caulked the gaps

around the wiring piped through the wall. Each opening

is a vulnerability, bats being small until they spread

in jagged shapes their wings. If one sneaks inside

and opens into a hot flapping mass in your home

it makes a sound you fear a long time after.



Tanner Pruitt is originally from Macon, Georgia, and is an MFA candidate at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. His poems have recently been published in the Greensboro Review, Minnesota Review, and Permafrost, among others.