Dear Sephora / It Must be Difficult to be a Poetry Editor / Vacancy – by MONICA FLEGG

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Dear Sephora,


I sprayed my wrists with the

sample of perfume you sent

called Alien which should

be renamed Alienate,

because even my dog won’t

come near me, and that feels

disturbing because

he’s an Australian Shepherd

that never leaves my side.

However, this morning he bolted

out the door and self

walked 50 yards ahead of

my assaulting aroma,

best described as

Chaos of Mall, with

base note of Play-Doh,

hints of synthetic sweetness,

metallic air conditioning,

and overtones of

whatever the heck they blast out

from Abercrombie and Fitch-

likely some fake pheromone

that only attracts zombies

and teens with impaired

olfactory senses because

their parents met on

and didn’t use their own


when choosing their mates,

which resulted in offspring with

deficient immune systems,

zillions of allergies and

insipid senses of smell.

So scents like Alien

are being mass produced,

and dogs everywhere are

running ahead,

even running away,

as the earth sprints toward

reeking stratosphere where

only aliens can exist.

I simply can’t thank you enough.




It Must Be Difficult to Be a Poetry Editor


Once you’ve seen fireworks

with an orchestra

it’s hard to go back to

just the lights and bangs.

Once you’ve heard the roar

of your son’s two stroke engine

firing up a Yamaha TZ250, shooting form

forward, spraying earth behind it’s hard

to be thrilled by doggerel, tricycles or

the uneven creak of training wheels.

Speaking of two strokes,

I met a guy drinking a pint

of Rookie’s  root beer

in  the Northeast Kingdom,

He quoted Bart Simpson and Anne

Sexton in a single conversation.

Word is he’s a med student/meth head

and goes by the handle Two Stroke.

A golden haired dentist from

Long Island also showed up.

I drove her to Bread and Puppet to

hear astonishing visual voices.

She said, “Some people have

too much time on their hands.”

I have nothing more to say

to that dentist,

but I’ll spark up carbonated conversation

with Two Stroke any old time.

“He who has ears to hear, let them hear.”





Now that you’re gone, time hangs slack.

Hours swing around like a nuisance

like an untied shoelace

like a brocade curtain shifting

hoarse whispers in a windstorm.

You arrived here

straight from the Heartland

full of basketball and buoyant hopes.

From Hershey High

you graduated smack

into the Harrisburg Hood;

and you tell better stories than

the Europeans ever could.

Yes, restfulness resumes;

cards and cognac are stowed away.

The linens washed and bed remade

for a different guest

a more guestly type

with much less hype,

with deathly protocol

and decent hours

and boring stories of foreign travel.

So, I’ll fix time.

I’ll sew it into honey fabric

tucking up loss in sticky liquid stitches

hemming you into a language space

a safe circular space

for vacancy to swirl



Monica Flegg lives on Nantucket Island where she walks dogs of various breeds and reads poetry of all creeds.  Her work has been published in numerous journals including; Rat’s Ass Review, Ruminate and Unbroken.


2 Replies to “Dear Sephora / It Must be Difficult to be a Poetry Editor / Vacancy – by MONICA FLEGG”

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