Fake Orchids

by Ace Boggess

driver of the silver Escalade accelerates
to keep me longer from the turning lane

“can’t believe he did that” says the woman beside me
“it’s okay” I tell her “he needs fake orchids too &

knows he has to beat you to the home-goods store
before you buy them all” she smiles

shakes her head & with forgiveness
she ignites like a bag of flares

I want my Ph.D. in making women smile
I want the evidence against me

suppressed so I am innocent again
if I can erase gray of the highway

the gray of rain & sparkling haze of the Escalade
those many years spent muddling among blur lines

of my own adventure “fine” she says
as she cups my hand above the transaxle

“let’s beat him” I say & at least today
I’m the protagonist of this film

with his favorite hat pistol notebooks &
one great line I haven’t thought of yet

Ace Boggess is the author of two books of poetry: The Prisoners (Brick Road Poetry Press, 2014) and The Beautiful Girl Whose Wish Was Not Fulfilled (Highwire Press, 2003). He is an ex-con, ex-husband, ex-reporter, and completely exhausted by all the things he isn’t anymore. His writing has appeared in Harvard Review, Mid-American Review, Atlanta Review, RATTLE, River Styx, Southern Humanities Review and many other journals. He currently resides in Charleston, West Virginia.