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Ready Regret

Read by Katrina Vandenberg

She used the stadium. I would have
chosen the bridge. We’re not even

Division One. Our tailgate crowds
are mostly enthusiastic about beer.

Sunlight in the trees. Sunlight
in the trees. I thought these

feelings would be blonder,
quieter, like that virus

that doesn’t kill you but kills in you
what tells you to wake up.

All the good and bad souls who
size me up judge a different woman

than the one you used to know:
two-room apartment with a view of cold

as imagined by lack of snow,
nut and honey cookies from the baker

for three weeks only to entice the spring
and later year-round because we can’t wait

for anything anymore so we forget what
the sweetness was supposed to mean.

Lisa Olstein is the author three collections of poetry: Radio Crackling, Radio Gone, winner of the Hayden Carruth Award; Lost Alphabet, a Library Journal best book of the year; and Little Stranger, a Lannan Literary Selection. She teaches in the New Writers Project and Michener Center MFA programs at the University of Texas at Austin.