Word Games

Joanna Chen

peasypod, like me, is very good at word games and she wastes her time playing them when she should be doing other things. so i’ve decided to send her to the nunnery down the road where she will be forced to curb her addiction because there is no wifi there. she’s pissed at me, says it’ll be boring once the aura of the nuns wears off and the dead quiet there will turn to dead without the quiet and that by punishing her i am only punishing myself. one of the nuns showed me a room i could sit in on the first floor of the convent and i thought god what will i do in there all day?

peasypod cheered up considerably when we got there and she saw how close the room was to the kitchen and that there was a little bed to sleep in. you will be julie andrews, she said to me, and i’ll be the little girl who comes down the stairs in the white dress and says goodnight before escaping. i never understood why they were running away or why they would want to leave that big house with the schnitzel and the high windows. it looked like a lot of fun to me.

peasypod has taken to crying a lot lately and it’s ruining my concentration. she says it’s me who should be crying, that she is doing it for me. i told her i’ll put rescue remedy on her tongue and make her hot chocolate at bedtime but i know what she wants: she wants my happy pills. she’s not getting them.

Joanna Chen has published extensively in Newsweek, The Daily Beast, Marie Claire and BBC World Service. Her poetry and poetic translations have appeared or are forthcoming in a number of journals, including The Bakery, Poet Lore, Recours au Poemes and The Blue Lyra Review. Read more at www.joannachen.com.