“In Which Christina Imagines That Different Types of Alcohol Are Men and She Is Seeing Them All” by Christina Olson

Gin was nice enough but had tiny teeth: little ships
of white. Whiskey showed up an hour late,
took me and my one good dress

to a crab shack. We cracked boiled crawfish, swept
our fingers over the tablecloth, left butter behind.

I hid in the back of the coffee shop—crouched
behind whole beans—and scoped out Rum, then left
without introducing myself. Maybe it’s cruel of me

but I just wasn’t feeling exotic. Bourbon
and I had fun, but it was all cigarettes

and ex-wives. Tequila was ever the gentleman, blond
and smooth as caramel. Bought all my rounds
and when I came back from the bathroom he,

my wallet, my car: all gone. The bartender didn’t look
sorry. My mother set me up with Brandy

and I should have known that he’d be the type
to own small dogs. I don’t like poodles.
I saw Gin again last night; both of us out

with other people. His: a redhead. I waved anyway,
and when he smiled, all sharp points

and blooded gums, well, that was when I fell in love.


Christina Olson