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Opal, Opal photo

Opal can put ping pong balls inside her vagina and push them out at the crowd. She can aim at me or at you and the balls land where they are meant to. She maintains a radius. She can look like a girl, a minor who hasn’t yet been fouled, and then look like a foxed document. Opacity is her hole-and-corner.
She started to ride by his Marigny shotgun until he came out and became her boyfriend. Her boyfriend, a chef who meets with narcotics anonymously, orchestrates impromptu dinners in the backyard of a liquor store. Her boyfriend is like a lipstick lost in a big purse, she shoves her hand around and digs for him. She cots with him when it gets hot. She doesn’t worry about what’s coming. She would get it when she got it.
She liked absinthe, she liked eyes on her. During the wreck she stopped and started. She got out of her body and didn’t mind being there. She was gone, she was gurgling. Blood dripping off the blood red nails of her fingers and toes. She scarred over.
She had a following, she had zest. She is spotted in the ninth ward in a silk nightgown from the fifties. At the age of sixty, she’s considered a kook. They found her more appealing as a picture than a living thing with a limp. They moved her getups into storage. She will spend most of the rest of her time looking at water. 
Her life was a sonnet. 
A secret hidden inside a ping pong ball.
She thinks about finding the key to the unit, popping some in again. She thinks about how she used to be able to suck her toes. She avoids the slap of day. She worries about the phone ripping her through the receiver. Mostly she’s low about what’s left over. And there are tourists throwing coins into the cardboard box and there are boys toe-tapping with bottle caps. What she needs is a quiet corner but those all got sold.
No end, she remains in the middle of the night. The air is trapped inside a ping pong ball. In the summer she smelled it— her senses softening, or getting sharper; she isn’t sure. She looks for signs. They swing on gold chains around girthy necks. She finds it difficult to grin in the way men adore. Her skin folds over itself.
She will put sequins in her pockets and in her mouth and make a face. She will squeeze and squeeze. Her life is balls.



image: Jessie Rodriquez