paper cut
the flesh-colored bandage
bright against her scales

summer vacation
her tentacle lotion
in the ethnic aisle

first day of school
one textbook chapter
on green history

keg stand
a fratboy in greenface
holds her ankles

autumn evening
with fake tentacles

stale coffee
her coworker asks
if she’s green all over

routine traffic stop
the chill of the car hood
beneath her green cheek

“excessive force” acquittal
outside, protester tentacles
squirm in handcuffs

—Joshua Gage