“::Poof::” by Abigail Uhrick

pooooof (2)
Bird Mouth by Eve Wood

We have to learn to speak the foreign language of this age—each year adding lessons that we would rather leave on loose sheets of paper to go where the wind might deliver them. We must change our context and our syntax, our simple and compound-complex structures. But we will pretend that we are not  changing, and we will try to cover up with shorthand—LOL—our pain.

I will use my spine as a means to measure those aches that simply could not stay hypothetical. You will use your head. You will say that it is never enough to guess—that we are the ones who need to prove anything we ever believed in. And we still believe, though we couch those beliefs in the framework of our failures, just in case others might see through them. We use so many symbols to prove our smiling faces.

So when the flashing screens ask us their questions that we still decode with blue ink on the backs of monthly paper bills, we will pretend, as we have always done, to have woken up with fingers flowering with acronyms—to press keys like we have been born with this language ready in our wrists. This will be the new grammar that we will credit with keeping us apart.  We are positive that we can make up for it L8R.

[Netlingo.com defines “::poof::” as “I’m gone” in texting lingo]



Abigail Uhrick has worked as a technology consultant for a defense contractor; an editor for a niche publisher; and an instructor of business, technical, rhetorical, and creative writing at colleges in California and Michigan. She currently teaches writing online. Her work has been published in a number of publications, including Columbia Poetry Review, Axolotl, 4ink7, Oleander Review, THAT Review, and Talking Writing.
This is artist Eve Wood‘s second piece in ACM.