Tough. (I don’t feel tough though, my tongue 
is on the gritty floor and covered in dirt and
debris from a weekend of debauchery. I don’t 
feel anything other than tired.) I’m told the 
blue jays mate even when they’re dying, as if 
evolution could not hold a reverent bow 
for the last breath of an angry bird. Supposedly 
that attitude was in the contract I signed 
a year ago, though the angry part suits me 
the best. I didn’t used to be so angry. 

I think I used 
to be tough. 

Pipe dreams. Rozell, 2021

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