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Prisoner of Love

by Brad Rose

It was an understandable mistake. A small figurine of a girl, you were available only in stores that sell bullets. It was like a silent movie. Thank goodness, it was a lot better than it sounded. Of course, love can’t be attributed entirely to crop failure. Your kiss was far less frigid than lipstick on a snow cone. Your mother said ours was a love inspired by an actual event based on a real Hollywood movie. When you introduced me to her, she turned to your Dad and yelled, “Morey, I’m warning you, don’t put those two electric eels in the same tank.” I kept thinking, is this going to be on the final exam? But you were so reassuring. You seemed happy as an emoticon. And you looked so Parisian, too. I couldn’t stop myself from blurting out, “I lake you a leetle beet.” (Isn’t that amazing?  I don’t even speak French.) When I whispered to you, “Today is the first day of the rest of our week,” you replied, “Thank God, I know shorthand.” Sadly, I soon learned that fog is much harder to plow than snow. Evidently, sometimes Cupid stumbles while on his fool’s errand. Like a waxed toboggan, things went downhill, lickity split. You ran off with another parolee. But I caught up with you. You said it was the way I looked at other women, espeically my three polygamous wives. How many times did I have to tell you, it’s not true if you don’t say it out loud?

Brad Rose is a Pushcart Prize nominee in fiction. As his nominator cautioned, “Brad, don’t get your tux out of the dry cleaners just yet.” Always a realist, Brad has booked a ticket to Stockholm and has written his acceptance speech, in Swedish. No one has had the heart to tell him that Stockholm is the site of a whole other prize. Links to Brad’s fiction and poetry are at:

Lead image“Emoticon Tale (219 / 365)” (via Flickr user Casey Fleser)