LUST AT THE CAFE FORMOSA
by Alexis Rhone Fancher
Once, at the Cafe Formosa in L.A.,
I saw the most beautiful girl. And
the best part was, you could see she didn’t know it. Yet.
Didn’t know how anxiously her nipples strained
against her shirt, or that her endless legs
and sloe-eyed gaze were worth a million
bucks... to someone.
She was a sway-in-the-wind willow, her skin
the pale of vanilla ice cream, her hair all shiny black
straight like an Asian girl’s, thick as a mop.
She was maybe seventeen, on the brink, so ripe
sex exuded from her pores. She leaned against the juke box
fingering those quarters in her shorts’ pocket
so they jingled like Christmas, the fabric
between her thighs stretched to bursting.
When her food arrived, the girl unwrapped
the chopsticks, lifted Kung Pow chicken to her mouth,
inhaled the spicy morsels. A long, sauce-slicked
noodle played with her lips and I longed to lick it off.
I’d been alone four years by then,
so used to it even the longing had long departed.
Then she showed up, all fresh-spangled, clueless.
If I didn’t walk out then I never would. Elvis was crooning
Don’t Be Cruel, but I knew she would be.
Girls like her can’t help it.
* * * * *
©Alexis Rhone Fancher First published in poeticdiversity, 2014
Alexis Rhone Fancher is the author of How I Lost My Virginity to Michael Cohen and other
heart stab poems, (2014), State of Grace: The Joshua Elegies, (2015), and EnterHere (2017).
She is published in The Best American Poetry 2016, Rattle, Slipstream, Hobart, Cleaver, The
MacGuffin, Poetry East, Plume, Glass, and elsewhere. Her photographs are published
worldwide, including the cover of Witness, Heyday, and Nerve Cowboy, and a spread in River
Styx. A multiple Pushcart Prize and Best of The Net nominee, Alexis is poetry editor of Cultural
Weekly. She lives in Los Angeles. Find out more at: www.alexisrhonefancher.com