Having the Repairman Over

We kept missing each other, the repairman and I, leaving notes on the door saying he was just here but nobody answered. I was determined to catch him. I took a day off and sat in the apartment with a scarf that I had bought. I took off the scarf, thinking that the best method of seducing the repairman was to be true to myself. He told me that was good advice and that he had let himself in. He asked me the problem, and I showed him the garbage disposal. He turned it on, and it let out a soft and normal roar, then he turned it off. I told him that the garbage disposal had felt like it was getting further and further away from me, and that wasn’t a bad thing in itself and is the expected natural process of garbage disposals as they get older, to bury themselves further into the Earth, but I was worried if I drop my keys or a ring or cellphone they might fall too far to get back. The repairman reached into the garbage disposal and felt around, fishing his arm back out. He told me that it sounded like I wanted him to fix something and that he only does repairs, and that they are two very different things but he couldn’t explain that right now because he had a busy schedule, and that if I wanted something fixed I should call a witch doctor, which he could recommend, but he would prefer not to. I told him that was all right and asked if he would like to stay for tea, that I had oolong and chamomile, but he referred to his previous statement about the busy schedule and went out the same way he came in.

Shaun Holloway has an MFA from George Mason University where he taught Literature and Composition. His poems have been published in Pithead Chapel, and has upcoming publications in Kestrel, Slipstream, and Inverted Syntax.