top of page

After Running into My Student at Therapy

There’s a pretzel bag in the honeysuckle bush.

There are acorns in my pockets.

There’s someone giving someone else a tennis racket.

I had a breakthrough. I had another breakthrough.

I asked my therapist, what’s it like sitting in a room all day,

Watching people have epiphanies?

I haven’t always been so willing.

I have tendencies—rewatching The Sopranos,

Rereading Jesus’ Son, asking for recommendations,

Starting and stopping a movie, a TV show, a book, and six books later,

Two TV shows later, three movies later, two weeks later, I’m still chasing it…

It was just… It was so good! I make the same meals.

I walk the same routes. I think about drinking. I think about thinking.

My head fills with clouds. No, dirt. No, smoke.

I wrote this because I had to.

I avoided it for days. I pick up and put down conversations.

My thoughts squash like blossoms

On the sidewalk. I return. I always return. I might leave. But I return.

I can’t help myself. I bought new shoes. I bought three new pairs of shoes.

I bought three books. I bought seven books. I bought thirty-seven books.

I texted you. I texted you again. I texted you for an hour.

Tomorrow is the first day of school. I’m going to run

Before class. I’m already thinking,

How can I wear myself out before I even begin?

Sometimes I can’t stop myself, but sometimes

I finally stop.

I spread out the acorns next to my rock collection.

I try to make space, but nothing feels right.

I want to tell you, I love you, but mostly

I don’t belong here.

Maybe I get along better than before. I think

I’ll go to bed early. Can you see me

Trying? Can you see me? I’m always trying.

I promise to keep trying. It always feels like

I’m going somewhere. It feels like I’m saying, here I am…

Welcome to my carousel ride at the end of the world.


BRYCE BERKOWITZ is the recipient of the AMC TV Pilot Award at the Austin Film Festival (2021). He is the author of Bermuda Ferris Wheel, winner of the 42 Miles Press | Indiana U. Poetry Award (2022). You can find him at:


bottom of page