A Quiznos Romance

I love the smell of salami in the evening.
It’s rich, salty, and reminds me of a time when
I was afraid of the person I am now.

My date looks fabulous in his corduroy pants,
Turtleneck sweater, black-rimmed glasses,
And a bit of mustard in his beard.

I order my sandwich and sit across from him.
These plastic booths are cold and unyielding,
But his eyes are the color of autumn.

I spill ranch on my Hawaiian shirt,
Printed with vibrant flamingos,
My favorite of his many gifts.

He helps me wipe it away,
His very touch sending shivers
Throughout my feverish body.

We speak in glances, accidental brushes,
knees interlocked beneath the table,
Because words aren’t enough.

We eat quickly, anxious to feel
Bare skin, cotton sheets,
And no responsibilities.

The sandwiches disappear.
Our fingers tremble in anticipation
As he asks “your place or mine?”

The Quiznos employee watches, amused,
As we stumble to the car like giddy fools
And head to our next destination.


The prompt for this poem was to “write a homoerotic poem set in a Quiznos, but don’t use the words love, lust, desire, passion, sex, or genital.”

This is my interpretation. What’s yours?

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