Z Machine

by Shawn Misener

I said to the guy

I'm afraid to find out what my spirit animal is

it could be a blobfish or a sloth or a slug

as much as I want it to be a fucking eagle

or a fucking black bear

or a fucking shark

he exhaled and slid his glossy hand into my cerebellum

and showed me anyway, the asshole

I got a good look at his eyes as he raped my mind

he was undeniably insane, not a mystic

or even some world-wizened guru set to push me

towards a flimsy enlightenment

oh jesus it had to be it had to be it had to be

a 1987 Z-model Xerox machine

is this even an animal? I bellowed

his measly eyes glazed over as he sloshed his hand

violently out of my skull

and quickly fished a rotten banana from his overcoat pocket

all glued to me he asked:

would you rather be a banana?