So, I'm stuck inside the airport with a Cabernet and a boyfriend who won't stop playing Fallout Shelter on his cell phone, and there's that moon again, getting all dirty blonde behind the clouds, and I can't remember the last time I spoke to my father before he killed himself with drugs, we think, though the report hasn't yet arrived, and I hate my aunt who planned his memorial service because who ever said I wanted that song, "Dance With My Father" to play when, honestly, I never danced with him in my whole boring life, and I can't get the feeling out of my heart that I did all the wrong things, like maybe being passed out drunk in a cab when he called me once, and who knows if that talk might've changed things, and I just want it all to stop, so I look at that sky, and there I am again, a child in Dad’s wiry arms, my mom looking on, and isn't she smiling, and isn't my anger tamed finally, and isn't the guy who's not yet my boyfriend somewhere in the universe not playing Fallout Shelter but waiting for me to pull my thick bangs back with my glasses and rest my head on his lap, and when I die will it hurt the way it hurts to know they found blood on the dishes in my father's apartment, or that he was alone, or that the truth is, the last time I saw him was outside that McDonald's in Middletown, Ohio where he smoked a cigarette and waved and said, Hey, Steph, and my heart sank to look at him.
Stephanie Rogers grew up in Middletown, Ohio and now lives in New York City. She was educated at The Ohio State University, the University of Cincinnati, and the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in journals such as Ploughshares, Cincinnati Review, Southern Review, Pleiades, Ninth Letter, Copper Nickel, and New Ohio Review, as well as the Best New Poets anthology. Saturnalia Books published her first collection of poems, Plucking the Stinger, in October 2016.