William Rayst, Designated Smoking Area

William Rayst

It’s the scent of rebellion
wafting low across the concrete
slab outside Locker Room B
that draws them in
to puff and gawk
at the smokeless and hurried
conformists they’ll never become.

You smoke, or you don’t –
there’s no middle ground
for squatters at the
gates of nicotine Heaven
or the architects of lipstick-ringed
filters seeding the grass beneath
the butt caddy.

Take a breath that others forfeit,
feel it coat your plumbing like a blue flame shower.
And what doesn’t go in glides
through the labyrinth of fibers in your
shirt, your sweater, and your hair.

Your dues paid with a rosy pink lung,
you can stand or lean with the kool kids,
kin to the infamous, the ones
who never play sports, but kiss the tar-lined lips of the
very bad girl. Lips you’d kiss too, if you were kool.

Bio: William Rayst is a Columbus, Ohio writer who creates poetry, fiction, and practical non-fiction. He is an active member of the Columbus writing group, Creative Minds Collective, and transforms himself into a writing juggernaut each November for NaNoWriMo. His work has appeared on Smashwords and in Stepping Stones Magazine.

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