Sandra Kolankiewicz ~ Why Don’t You Try

Why don’t you try to be me and see how
it goes? I’ll take the dull brown hair and the
split floor plan if you’ll go danc­ing. Are there
oth­er kinds of Ecstasy? I’ll stand in

your back yard at dawn, the sky red above
the dis­tant stacks of the blast fur­nace, far
enough away that I am in England
or some oth­er empire so long ago

I haven’t been born. In exchange, you’ll be

walk­ing home at day break, hold­ing your high
heels by their back straps, dirty feet on the
con­crete, hav­ing tossed your stock­ings into
a dump­ster, safe because you know to step

in the mid­dle of the street, no doorways
to fall into. You can­not help yourself
and nei­ther can I on the morn­ings we
pass each oth­er on the desert­ed walk.


Sandra Kolankiewicz’s poems have appeared wide­ly over the past thir­ty-five years, start­ing out with Mississippi Review in 1980 and most recent­ly here, at New World Writing.  She teach­es devel­op­men­tal English in West Virginia.