James Bond, Mitch Rapp, and John Wick Walk into a Bar
Color doesn’t matter: It can happen to Idris Elba as DCI John Luther
or Michael B. Jordan as Tom Clancy’s John Clark. It’s a man thing.
So many women have lost their lives to fridging, the plot device
that kills off a hero’s love interest to compel him to act,
that it’s hard for us to avoid penis envy. Who wants to die
so that a man finds his path, answers his destiny to rid the world
of evil, one villain at a time? But if every man is an island, make me Santorini, Palawan, Doorn. Give me Q’s cool gadgets and fast
expensive cars. Watch me drive over the cliff and survive, sexier
for the scars—bloodied by cuts from punches that land like
mosquitos on a body hardened like Hercules. Call me Adonis,
Apollo; let me live, a god, forever. Just don’t misunderstand
and make me a boy. Not Huckleberry Finn, not Peter Pan. Not
Harry Potter, Peeta or Lloyd Dobler—no teenagers. What happens
when they grow up? Make me a man, like the ones in movies,
the ones who always get it right, even when they get it wrong.
I Am Not Uncertain
Wonder Woman needs an invisible plane
because she’s stunning—a goddess.
High-cut bikini bottoms highlight
strong Amazonian thighs. Long legs
laced in knee-high boots, a kind of kink,
were made for kicking ass. And the tight
red corset fringed with gold barely contains
her large perfectly perky breasts—
the emblazoned eagle a beacon of something
other than freedom. This Diana Prince
is most men’s fantasy. She can stop traffic,
and wars, dressed like this. On Themyscira,
her sisters let her live in peace. But here,
with us, she needs the jet to get around safely,
undetected. Or she just needs to age a little.
Let Wonder Woman reach fifty, sixty, and
no one will see her no matter what she wears.
Old age is a woman’s superpower, if only
it felt like one.
I Wish I Were Mississippi State in the Bottom of the Ninth
Because a higher seed in a tournament is like having a PhD:
it gets you tenure and cushy committees, gets you into bars
without paying a cover charge, discounts on cars at the
Lexus dealership. This is the kind of clout people sell their
soul to snort, ride that high even higher, but top seeds are
meant to be knocked out in the early rounds. Because Texas
is already big enough. Because I don’t like the color
orange. Because I’d rather be Cinderella than Icarus.
Because I just want a taste of success—not a bite big
enough to choke on—just a pinch nestled between lip and
teeth, something to spit when I’m angry, when I’m nervous,
when I’m ready to fuck you up. Because I’m an underdog
and can sniff out other underdogs, and we run in packs
through your posh neighborhood. Because somebody has to
win and why not the boys from M—I—Crooked
Letter—Crooked Letter— I—Crooked Letter—Crooked
Letter—I—Humpback—Humpback—I. Because I want to
shock the world with a walk-off single to center, because I
want a shot at the series final, because I want to be more
than anyone ever thought I could be. Because when people
say my name, I want it to be with envy—part prayer, part
praise. Because I want people to know my name. Know it.
Say it. Mean it. Never forget it.
A 2020 Best of the Net Finalist, Marissa Glover lives in Florida, where she serves as co-editor of Orange Blossom Review and senior editor at The Lascaux Review. Marissa’s poetry collection, Let Go of the Hands You Hold, was released in 2021 from Mercer University Press. She’s on Twitter @_MarissaGlover_.