= San Francisco
It’s walking your adult miniature goat Jezebelle
down the street in the drizzle—umbrella-less—
to pick up your favorite direct-trade organic
El Salvadorian Kilimanjaro-Kenya Process blend
special ordered for that evening’s Cycling Club soirée.
It’s chit-chatting with the barista politely
about a potential barter—your goat cheese
for his chickens’ eggs—even if you’re steaming
because he’d forgotten (again!) to place your order.
But it’s inviting him to consider joining the club anyway
although he hasn’t biked since becoming a Buddhist
(for reasons you don’t entirely follow).
And his declining. Because, well … His girlfriend’s band
has a fundraiser gig that night, all proceeds going to
the Indigenous-Eco-Sativa-Redwood Sanctum Foundation.
Then it’s accidentally leaving behind Jezebelle’s poop bag
between the register and the kosher vegan ‘What’s Up-cakes’
and his safe-keeping it until your next visit (five days later)
in case it was a sample for I dunno … Jezebelle’s Vet?
Michael Montlack is the author of the poetry book Cool Limbo (NYQ Books) and the editor of the Lambda Finalist essay anthology My Diva: 65 Gay Men on the Women Who Inspire Them (University of Wisconsin Press). Recently his poetry appeared in North American Review, Barrow Street, Hotel Amerika, Tupelo Quarterly, Poet Lore, The Cortland Review, and Painted Bride Quarterly. He lives in NYC.