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  • Tyler Elizabeth Hurula

Lady of Leisure

By Tyler Elizabeth Hurula


The hallway is long and covered in wood

that sometimes splinters and snags

at the too long, tattered-up hem of my jeans.

My bedroom is on the left but nothing

in there is mine. It was originally

a guest room. With a guest bed and guest

sheets and guest hangers for guest clothes,

and an ancient doily on the acetone

stained bedside table. Though I admit,

the acetone is mine. The doily covers


it just enough so when she pokes

her head in while I’m at school she doesn’t


see. I’m not sure what she’s looking

for, except proof I don’t belong. The swish

of her peonied bathrobe echoes

down the hallway, avoiding the splinters.

She carries a clipboard to list each grievance.

Clothes on the floor. Bath towels hung


crooked. An unmade bed. I hear her yelling

each one at my mom when she thinks

I’m not home. She says I’m a lady of leisure

because don’t I have better things to do


than sleep in until noon? My parents

divorced and we gave away


the dogs that still sometimes stampede

through my dreams so we could live


here. I lost the friends I was too shy to make,

And yes, sometimes the ache in my chest


throbs so heavy it anchors me in bed.

Grandmas are supposed to love


their grandchildren, and she does – but

I’ve learned from a distance is best.



About Tyler Elizabeth Hurula:


Hurula (she/her) is a poet based in Denver, Colorado. She is queer and polyamorous, and is cat mum to two fur babies and a plethora of plants. She has been published previously in Anti-Heroin Chic. Her poems feature love, polyamory, family, growing up, and being queer. Her top three values are connection, authenticity, and vulnerability; she tries to encompass these values in her writing as well as everyday life.

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