“You know, you should win that every time.”
The images move when I touch them,
hunched over my phone
To escape.

I know what he says isn’t true.
The cards can be stacked against me.
And no matter what
I lose.

That’s okay. I don’t need to win.
Winning isn’t why I’m here.
I play to escape,
To numb.

To leave behind the judgments
And demands and criticisms
To mindlessly play
And yet …

In the back of my head, his words echo,
Activating my comfortable self-doubt.
Perhaps I should win.
Every time.

My shoulders tense as ego and id
Brandish their well-honed swords.
A familiar battle that, of course,
I lose.

Being wrong is intimate, familiar,
Like a worn blanket, smelly and stained
That I should leave behind.
And still,

I play.


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