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  • I've agreed to meeting up with a stranger named Baltie because we both are in the business of writing poetry letters for other people. He includes photographs in with his letters. He's asked if when we meet if he could take pictures of me, and I told him sure, I guess, but that I want mine to be prim and proper, not like the raunchy topless ones that I've seen on his website. Before meeting him I decided it would be a good idea to commission a letter. He responded quickly with a note describing and celebrating parts of my naked body. We have never met. And now, because of this we will never meet. But if we did this is just how I would want it to happen…
  • I will descend the bus and the breeze coming off Lake Monona will ripple the long fur of my legs. Right away I will see him sitting on a bench in his pink jiggalo suit and I will attempt to raise my baseball cap at him, but my ponytail (fed through the hole in the back of my cap) won't let me lift it off my head. Instead, I'll settle for wiggling my fingers in my friendliest lady hello, and as I do, my many neon glitter friendship bracelets will clack together a maraca beat. The mini troll doll clip-ons that hang from my ears will dance to the rhythm and I won't be able to stop myself from smiling gleefully as soon as he notices me. My smile, will be a silver prize I'll award to this tender pervert who has been waiting for me, a prize where the metal of my retainer is a trap for the teeth and tongue hidden beneath.

    "I have been waiting so long to meet you," I'll moan as I continue to darken my shirt with light yellow-orange sweat- something that I'll unsuccessfully avoid by donning an American Lung Association top that is four sizes too big. Big shirts should offer ventilation, but it'll be clear as I squeeze my body against his in moist embrace that this one has done nothing to conceal my nervous stench. He'll gasp for air after delicately extracting himself from my furry purple stretch-tube scarf, the same one my aunt picked out for me at Walgreens on my 17th birthday and told me it could be worn as a scarf, a skirt, a hat or a dress.

    "Baltie," I will purr his name with breath from my unbrushed yeast and bacteria colony filled mouth, pulling at my Polly Pocket locket that holds a picture of my two deceased cats. And oh, I'll need their cat prowess that day. "Shall we walk?" He'll shrug a yes so I'll reset my pedometer to 0 and link my arm in his. His pink velvet will rub like a tongue against the crack of my arm. Walking together I'll notice how his strides are considerably smaller and slower than mine. I'll look down and notice his flashy pair of green and yellow crocodile shoes on his feet made of beautiful, pungent leather, but awfully sharp and pointy. Nowhere near as comfortable as my grey geriatrics will be that day. That day I'll know what is best for the feet! And I will also observe how he doesn't wear socks, inviting all the blisters of the world to get to know his dainty writer feet. wool socks are not necessary, although they are the best, and of course that day like I've already said I'll be using only the best.

    After a block I will wonder what time it is. I'll stop walking, slap my muppet tote bag on the pavement and fish around inside it for a second pair of glasses, Dad's old aviator glasses. I'll explain to Baltie how my eyes have gotten so bad that I can't even read my watch out of the ones I "always wear," though secretly I don't actually need glasses at all and they hinder my vision. That day when I come off the bus I'll be sporting my brother's pair from his freshman year of High School, conveniently 15 years out of men's style. My newly blurry field of vision will ensure I'll have to gingerly maneuver every existing curb or break in the sidewalk. After locating them, I will have to push the aviators on right over the other pair I have on since my Dad's head is considerably larger than both of his children's. For added support I'll have to strap a headband right over my baseball cap to secure the dual spectacle rims in place. The center of the headband will have a pretty ribbon rose on it. In the center of the rose will be a fake pearl shaped like a tear. However that day I won't be shedding any tears.

    Only after all the extra rigmarole will I inspect the time on my watch with a squint. "It's three o' three, give or take a few minutes, should we go get a coffee or are you hungry for dinner?" I'll ask Baltie this, but before he has time to decide, I'll spot an invisible tick on my khaki knee-length cargo shorts and because of it I'll shriek and flail my appendages. I'll order him to get the tick as I rip out a swiss army knife from of one of my Velcro pockets. He'll take it, but he won't know how to open it. "Open it! There's a tweezer in there, a scissor in there, a corkscrew, arg don't be helpless!" I'll snatch it back out of his limp hand and flip out the tweezers and squeeze the dastard critter off my knee and toss it into the nearest dumpster.

    Immaculate again, I'll smile my metal at him snaking my arm back into his. "Do you just want to take me back to your apartment and take those photos of me?" I'll reach into my money belt and pull out my silly putty, my stress reliever. "Can we take the pictures like this?" I'll pose with sleeves rolled up, revealing uneven underarm shag, one hand lowering my aviators slightly to reveal the frames beneath and my other hand pinching the silly putty into a pink blob on the end of my nose. The roominess of my shirt and cargo shorts give the added effect of a malnourished woman drowning in tan sacks of homeliness. And from these sacks issues a sudden a wave of gas originating from the broccoli-cabbage-cauliflower cheese pie that I had at noon. The noise of which will trumpet upwards an octave, just like a sung question. The question if it were translated to words would be, "Am I still sexy?"

    He'll shake his head no, turn around and leave me to my prize: a pleasant date with my truest self in the land of Madison.
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