Real

I told my friend, when she asked me 
What I was up to, after she told me all
the news from her side of the continent.
(her husband dropped dead of a heart attack
so I try to let her go first)

Oh, great. Now you’re going to write about me

She tried to sound like she was joking
but she wasn’t.
(if you don’t want people to know what you’re
trying to hide, don’t keep them around for 30 years)

nonono
I don’t write about real stuff.
I write fiction.
poetry.
Not true stories 
(except true ghost stories
which she agrees is fair)

and then we went on to other topics.

but it is true, I don’t write about real stuff
except that isn’t completely accurate.

an accurate statement is
I can’t write about real stuff

I can write about stuff that happened
that kind of real
or about my opinion
(the reality of which is, by definition
a matter of opinion)

20 years after, 
as they say, shit got real
(eating Top Ramen 
living under a bridge)

(death, destruction, acts of god)

where shit gets real is
bright as a 2 p.m. desert
(you better wear shades or 
you’ll fry your retinas)

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