The Student Literary Journal of Vermont State University

that here in the coffee shop
lonely men and women inside my mind
are hosting dinner parties,

opening parlor doors
in cocktail dresses or ties
when their guests arrive
with bottles of wine.

This is how it goes every evening.

My mind fills with their coats
slung over various chairs.

The women are too polite.
Their dresses have too many buttons.

The men take glasses gently
from the women’s cold hands
and fill them too full with merlot.

The bottles gather on far tables in all of the houses.

From my table I see
the street lamps lighting the windows.
The wine works quickly.
The women grow tired
and calm. The men’s arms wrap
around them like welcome furniture.

Everyone with warmed blood.
Everyone swept into conversations,

their faces growing lively, their voices
filling the rooms. By the time
I gather my things and begin
the walk to my apartment
the guests have gone,

but left behind
are dozens of glasses
with a blush of wine
at each of their stems.


Rebecca Macijeski received her MFA from Vermont College of Fine Arts in 2011 and is currently studying toward a PhD in Poetry at University of Nebraska—Lincoln where she serves as an Assistant Editor in Poetry for Hunger Mountain and Prairie Schooner. She also is an assistant to Ted Kooser’s newspaper project, American Life in Poetry. Some of her recent work has been featured as part of the Tupelo Press 30/30 Project, and she is a recipient of a 2012 Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Prize. She has attended artist residencies with The Ragdale Foundation and Art Farm Nebraska. Poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Poet Lore, Painted Bride Quarterly, Rappahannock Review, Storyscape, Tinderbox Poetry Journal, Whiskey Island, Lullwater Review, Fickle Muses, Phantom Drift, Border Crossing, Fourteen Hills, and others.