My head slips deeper into my sweater’s neck.
Like a turtle.
I’m willing to part with my shell.
Not now, she says.
Bumps raise on my skin’s first layer.
All is quiet in this corner.
Sight beyond is hollow and unnecessary.
It’s my turn with my mind’s game.
My thought’s current tactics are patient with my recollection.
Nothing even matters, they said.
I interrupt myself and change channels.
Returning to my regularly scheduled programming.
Smiling like I mean it and unbraiding my hair.
If only I could slow down and return your gesture.
But I can’t recall our last move.
So I revert to an old remedy.
The shell surrounds me--
Guarded from penetration and winning the game.
The spotlight too bright and the prize extravagant.
You pawn me off with the king’s jewels.
I jump, swinging my leg over your head
And wrap ribbons around the maypole.
Shouting secrets over the uneven grass,
And mouthing fantasies across subway seats.
Doe eyed deliverance!
Posture maintained--I'm a decent bluff.
My stop approaches, and the doors open.
The game is forfeited, and I lose my turn.