lunch comes whenever my hunger grinds on my guts
it varies in time, depending on my menses
sometimes I’m ravenous, sometimes I’m a drought
I’m velcroed to my desk chair, strapped in like a submissive
my master is my paycheck, he determines my quality of life
he keeps my fridge full or empty
he pays for my therapist and my multivitamins
and the occasional extravagant liquid lunch

I walk into the break room, again, in full armor
I’m ready for the shrapnel, the benign conversations, the commentary, the gossip and the awkward “hello’s”

If I’m in a particularly good mood, I’ll wear make-up, comb my hair even
but most days I look windswept and interesting
and smell like cigarettes and sweet bread
I warm up my leftovers and watch the microwave spin on its axis
I picture folding myself up and positioning myself inside
melting into my rice
a bubbling marinara
hot noodles to slurp
but the beeping brings me back
my food is ready
I slip out without much pomp, but with inevitable circumstance

I eat inside an empty office, because it’s the only way I’ll get any peace, any quiet
I leave the lights off so that no one will assume I’m in there
I put on my headphones and watch a mukbang
another lonely person eating in the privacy of an empty room, talking at me, to me, to hundreds, thousands…

I cry into my soup, I hate this place
but I have an apartment to pay, and food to buy, and a car to pay

I am just another victim of this 9-5
so on my days off, I indulge
I take in as much of myself as I can, replenish my drained battery with music, art and masturbation

One must love oneself
that shit can’t be left to someone else
they don’t know your buttons, or your ghosts

so I burn candles in hopes that Santa Muerta and Elegua will grant my wishes
I smoke cigars to clean my lungs
and drink spirits to soothe mine

lunch is over and I unplug
time to float on the brink of insanity
I return to my electric chair and strap in
20 e-mails
most of them are “reply all” responses to a meme
it’s how we get through our days, how we cope…





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