replying to text messages at red lights

by The Cowl Editor on October 21, 2021


blurry red lights at a traffic intersection
Photo courtesy of

by AJ Worsley ’22


it’s not that i didn’t have the time, 

in fact, it’s precisely the opposite.

i had too much time, 

too much time on my hands with nobody to occupy it. 


but if you keep with that attitude you’ll only ever have friendships, 

never any best friendships. 


everyone else in their life, a vacuum for their presence. 

your time will come, but you have too much time, 

it already should have come by now.


but what good is the poet if they don’t know the power of their ink?

and when do they turn the lights off in this parking lot? 


do your hair the same way you’ve been for years. 

put on that same hoodie and start the car. 

drive somewhere in a pathetic attempt to be busy to mimic the lives you once occupied. 


“sorry i can’t right now,” a dead phrase in my life, 

i can, and i will every single time. 

to cope, i apply pressure to the few people i have left, 

and in return it actually pushes them further away.

they tell me i’m too dependent on them, 

but i’m just dying to get inside their head because i’ve been stuck in my own for far too long.


and the truth is, the only thing i’m dependent on is this steering wheel.