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Sunday, Oct. 10, 2010

Mitchell International

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Once in the year 2000 after a flight home from LA, back when it was okay to cling to constants, one of my best friends met me at the airport. She came right up to the gate with her shock of red hair. Jenny! I squealed and we embraced. I had taken a late flight and the airport was closing when I arrived. We strolled hand-in-hand through the empty fluorescent beige terminal in our Midwestern city in mid-December. It was peculiar, like walking the halls of your elementary school at night, but more peculiar still to see my friend Leah with her curly dark hair sitting all by herself near where gate B-17 overlapped with B-18. Leah?! I called out, and we embraced. Soon the three of us came to the terminal hub where there was a bit more buzz. An old man was leaning against a kiosk reading a newspaper, and when he shook the newspaper and lowered it I realized it wasn’t an old man at all, but my old pal Austin in his grandpa pants. Austin! I laughed and we embraced. As the four of us made our way toward the escalators to baggage claim Jenny nudged me uneasily and said Look. A homeless man was curled up on a bench. I turned down the corners of my mouth but suddenly the homeless man cast off the windbreaker covering his face and wouldn’t you know it, there was jephreee, as Jeff liked to be called then. Our five hearts surged down the escalator to get my bags.  This is a true story of what life was like in those days if that sort of thing interests you.


Printed with the permission of Kore Press, korepress.org.



Becca Klaver was born and raised in Milwaukee, WI, and now lives in Brooklyn, NY. She’s the author of LA Liminal (Kore Press, 2010), a founding editor of the feminist poetry press Switchback Books, and a PhD student in Literatures in English at Rutgers University.