SWWIM publishes, celebrates, & promotes women, women-identifying & Femme-presenting writers through a Miami-based reading series & the online poetry journal SWWIM Every Day.

Bob's Wife by Janelle Cordero

Bob fell off the wagon again. We talked about it

no more than an hour ago. Now, we’re in the front yard

on this sunny day in January and Bob’s wife comes

outside. I’m leaving him, she says. How are you,

we say. I’m wonderful now that I’m leaving him,

she says. Let us know if you need any help, we say.

What does that mean? Nothing can be helped, not now.

They’ve been together a long time, Bob and his wife.

And all we know of their love is how far ahead of him

she always walks, and how she never looks back,

even when he stumbles, even when he falls.


Janelle Cordero is an interdisciplinary artist and educator living in the seventh most hipster city in the U.S. Her writing has been published in dozens of literary journals, including Harpur Palate and The Louisville Review, while her paintings have been featured in venues throughout the Pacific Northwest. Her debut poetry collection, Two Cups of Tomatoes, was published in 2015, and her chapbook with Black Sand Press is forthcoming in 2018. Stay connected with Janelle’s work at www.janellecordero.com

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