A good day is a minefield

eluding the devil with every step

as she smiles that sideways smile

with hair falling in her eyes.


I step past

to a more diligent place

where I can stay busy with an active brain

and not think about the lure of an open field

where the devil stands at the edge




how long

before I give in.


which, of course, I do.

minefields are dangerous.

and sometimes you long for a break.

to be selfish.

to dream.


She points at me and curls her finger

leading me into a black-walled room

illuminated with candles

and a bed in its center.

Her robe falls away

and she slithers into the satin sheets.


I begin to applaud.

A slow, rhythmic pounding.

And I smile—

she nearly had me.



Then she disappears

and I’m back in a minefield reeking of corpses

taking another cautious step

and another

until I see her

standing there


in front of a frothy sea.


I can smell the salt air

my skin begins to tighten

the warmth of the sun coaxes me in her direction.

I step past

and look for a place

to lay my head for the night.



Jim Mitchem

The Footrace
How to Write Branding Copy

Jim Mitchem

Writer. Father to daughters. Husband. Ad man. Raised by wolves. @jmitchem on twitter. First novel, Minor King, out now.