Aphelion Issue 290, Volume 27
December 2023 / January 2024
Long Fiction and Serials
Short Stories
Flash Fiction
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To My Future Self

by S. T. Eleu

Feel free
future self to travel back anytime
to any time

to slap me
to blacken my eye
to crack my skull
to yell in my face –

You’re leaving your

glasses, keys
cellphone, passport

there; where
a frantic search throughout the land
will wilt away minutes x hours x years
of your life?”

You’re asking that fool
to dance
based solely on

those tight jeans
that fantastic yet fiendish smile
those “free” cocktails

because you think it will be fun
to forfeit half of all you own?”

You’re feasting on warehouse sushi
because you found a coupon
and had a hunger for

invasive invasive procedures
the forceful fingers of an impatient intern?”

You’re skipping, postponing, rescheduling
for the ninth time your checkup
because cancer is now your

friend with insurance benefits
cousin with a chemo dealer
roommate with a death wish?”

You’re lollygagging, lounging on the sofa
loafing around, waiting until later
to jot down those

brain worms
seed thoughts

that beg you
to release them
so that they may coalesce one day

into a child
into a movement
into eternity

because you’re sure
that when you finally have the time to write
your mind will be

an ATM just four numbers removed
from an inspiring withdrawal

and NOT an empty vault?”

future self, this I ask and no more.

© 2015 S. T. Eleu

S. T. Eleu hase been a language arts teacher specializing in bilingual and special education for the past twenty-five years in the Chicago Public Schools. Currently, they are at a successful K-8 school – Augustus H. Burley – that champions authentic literature and choice in writing.

Find more by S. T. Eleu in the Author Index.

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