“A is for Addiction,” by Liz Sellier

Dec 20th, 2017 | By | Category: Poetry

A drafty basement. Bitter coffee. 12 steps.
Attendees join four-fingered hands
and bow blue, green, orange, yellow heads,
in surrender and serenity.

The leader, a feathered and beaked behemoth
asks a new attendee gently:
“Would you care to share your story?”

He wrings his blue hands,
his pupils spin maniacally.
With shame and solemnity, he says:
“Me want cookie.”

He thinks about the fiendish things
He’s done to score some shortbread.
He’s whored himself for Oreos
and pulled a Glock on Girl Scouts.
Aghast at the monster he has become,
he fears he can’t untangle
his addiction from his identity.

A gruff green street urchin
with an aluminum shell
pats the shuddering shoulder and says,
“I get it, man. I can’t stay off the junk.”

Nodding, the beak speaks softly:
“I suggest a cookie sponsor.”


Liz Sellier is a writer living in San Francisco. She studied English at UCLA and works in tech. She hopes to see her name in the New Yorker one day, even if it’s just for winning the Cartoon Caption Contest. Find her at her website, Medium, or Twitter.

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