We walk in on Thanksgiving, trash bags filled with clothes
slung over our shoulders. Heather insists I break
a twenty at McDonald’s. I buy a dollar cheeseburger, eat it
as the cashier counts out the nineteen dollars’ worth
of quarters. No one else is there. Neither of us
bothers to separate
the whites from colors or obey
the posted sign that says we shouldn’t
sit on top of the washers. So, we lie
back, discuss the different shapes
the ceiling stains resemble: a butterfly, atomic
bomb explosion, ruffled
curtain, deep red
crayon melting down the wall. We don’t want to go home.
Three streets over, our parents wash the dishes, hit
their joint again, and pack the leftovers
away, while their two daughters hope
the dryers won’t really dry the clothes
in fifty minutes. We drag them out. Heather insists
we fold the underwear.
Stephanie Rogers grew up in Middletown, Ohio, and she now lives in New York City. She was educated at The Ohio State University and the University of Cincinnati. Her first collection of poems, Plucking the Stinger, was published by Saturnalia Books, and her second collection, Fat Girl Forms, was published from Saturnalia Books in 2021.