The Landlord At The Door

 

 

The Landlord At The Door

It’s not because of charcoal scarred into
the carpet, after hurling a hookah, sparks and all,
down a flight of stairs. It’s not because
local drunks know the two-car garage doubles
as an open bar. No noteworthy crime was ever
reflected in that bathroom mirror. Not one
vagabond has danced these floors with
the filth of brothels on her boots. There are no
squatter’s here; everyone’s accounted for.
It’s not that anything is wrong with any of the
appliances: The dishwasher isn’t kicked in;
the microwave isn’t caked with blood;
the sinks are not clogged with hair, condoms
and cigarette butts. It’s got nothing to do with
garbage bags full of body parts. Nothing

ever goes wrong. Yes, of course, we’d
love to have you in—It’s just these cockroaches,
see? And the exterminators are here
to take care of it. We’re making sure
the whole place gets wiped out.

by Ryan Dowling