David Arroyo

Professor, Please Tell Me!

My English professor is a tentacle, secretly.  Wears a plaid flannel shirt and a babyface.  His glasses — white mirrors — reflect the distracted/fragmented glow of androids.  When he speaks of poetry, he will tip-toe down the aisle like a ballerina, twirling, his hands out as if hugging an old friend; the mirrors reveal hidden gifs, faces of the bored, faces of the absorbed, the word “sestina,”  unless the poet is Sharon Olds, then he strides like a cross-bearing altar boy.  My thigh, molded in blue jeans, is etched ecchi across the lenses.  With a sour apple flash his eyes peer over the rims, asking “how do they do it, the ones who make love without love?” and he swallows hard as if digesting a fantasy made of broken glass.  I suppress a smile and bite down on my lip so hard that my nose bleeds a single drop. A small pool of green slime hugs the heel of his red converse sneaker and an emerald tendril peaks out the bottom of his black khakis, flirtatiously. I am the only who notices; I am the only one pining for an answer.

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