Like the Rat He Is by Rachel Nix

Burning Ones by Tyler Rayburn
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Like the Rat He Is

I remember my aunt telling the guy in the rat suit
at Chuck E. Cheese not to look at or touch us;
we were young girls, but on the verge of filling out.
That was nearly 20 years ago; these days,
I catch myself thinking:

            Watch out for rats.

I learned early just how men can be, from men
whose names I won’t even say anymore. But, a girl
gets lonely sometimes, and I’ve been told
I should lower my standards.

To be fair: my age is getting away from me
and I’ve yet to settle down like a proper Southern woman;
my hips are wider than they’ve ever been, and I’m betting
it’s nature’s way of telling me it’s about time I have some hellions
that I can take for pizza play-dates. So let’s say I do it—
let’s say I get hitched to some man
who doesn’t read books,
who only votes to get out of work
for a little while, or worst of all,
thinks guacamole is gross.

                                                  How happy would I be?

Will he begin to lose interest when I choose a book I’ve read
three times already
over Wednesday night sex?


Then there we’ll be one fine day, at some pizza joint,
watching our little angels bop plastic monsters
on the head for prizes, and I’ll catch him eyeing
some younger woman – trying to see through her jeans,

                                                  like the rat he is.

Rachel Nix

Rachel Nix is a native of Northwest Alabama. She likes coffee in the morning and bourbon at night but rarely knows what time it is otherwise. Her work has most recently appeared in Melancholy Hyperbole and Bop Dead City. Rachel is the poetry editor at cahoodaloodaling; more of her poetry can be found at: