Just the Other Stuff Published with The Feminine Collective November 2019 poetry When I ran away for the first time I hid in my closet in my bedroom with Judy Blume and a flashlight until my dad found me and brought me home. Matter seemed so solid and still then. The second time I skipped town I hopped on my red ten-speed bike and took to the Village Mall bookstore where I sat steeping and stewing in the scent of new ink and paper and Salty Pretzels until I lost myself in The Secret Garden. A man who smelled of moth balls and coffee asked me if I planned to buy the book or just steal the words without paying for them. There were gaping spaces between his pieces and parts. The third time I left I was a dancing woman in a silk dress and a floppy straw hat with purple flowers. I camouflaged myself under the slopey ceilings in my Nana’s attic walk in closet by the teeny window with Jane Austen, some robins on the roof, and everything I owned packed up in my heart. I may have melted or boiled that day. Yesterday I left and No One knew. “What is it? Something new this time or just the other stuff?” No One has never seen a person swirling away atom by atom. I would have unpacked my heart with Elie Wiesel with my notes in the margin but he ran away during the move. Instead I limped down the driveway and back with Luna and then ordered Elie on Amazon. I am shifting. Between my words there is so much space and I am lost among them.