Robot, Diamond, Meatball, Hangman

The same choices keep coming up
as either/or buttons sewn into
each cheek of your childhood
undies and you still laugh pre-
tending when friends show you
videos that they think are funny.
We evolved for this, she says, and you
think: Tinder. Siri. Uber. Pleather.
She says, babies, and you fill with dis-
pleasure. You’re in a new city now
and can smell yourself, feel the square
map in your back pocket and almost
believe you know what is over
the next hill. And now you are
back in the woods behind the house
where you grew up, holding a branch
as it turns into bone and you drop it
recalling that these woods were once
a horse farm, the bone once a horse a-
gallop between these same trees. Now
drop into a bar where Nirvana is playing.
Ask for a beer but receive water. Think,
Robot. Diamond. Meatball. Hangman. Your
phone lights up and the bubbles read:

            My killed himself

            ***My brother


Tracy May Fuad is a poet and essayist of Kurdish descent born and raised in Minnesota. She has taught writing, science, and social justice in Brooklyn, and multimedia storytelling in Turkey and Iraq. Her writing has appeared (or will soon appear) in Ninth LetterNashville Review, and Hayden’s Ferry Review. She’ll be in residence at the Vermont Studio Center this spring, and began her MFA in poetry this fall.