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Dress Rehearsal

by Lisa Sultani

Image of a woman in a red dress posing with arms to the side of her looking disappointed.
Image credit: Vladimir Fedotov on Unsplash

I attended an event last night

Actually, it was a first date with a man named Jacob

Around the halfway point, which I knew to be halfway only in retrospect,

He asked me what I had been like when I was younger

My first thought was “giddy”,

But I understood that was not the answer he was looking for

So instead I answered I had been chubbier

And that I began to slim down in my 20s when I discovered hot yoga

He was pleased by this, and asked to join me in a yoga class some weekend

Because I am no longer young, I knew what he was really asking

And I knew, because I am no longer young,

He would not be prepared for the way in which I would quench his thirst

But there was the rest of dinner to spend together

So for the moment I said I would check the studio calendar

And let him know if there were any beginner classes

When I reached back home, alone, I gratefully peeled off my dress

It is a beautiful garment embroidered with exotic birds

I chose it at a flea market and wear it only on special occasions

Jacob had not commented on it, instead focusing on my eyes

Which I have not chosen but happen to be a clear blue

I decided then that this occasion was not special after all,

But gave myself credit for not losing hope

For although a long way from giddy, I am still a long way from hopeless


Black and white photo of the author, Lisa Sultani.
Lisa Sultani

Lisa Sultani earned her MA in Library and Information Studies from the University of Wisconsin- Madison. She has publications forthcoming in the Delta Poetry Review and J Journal. Ms. Sultani lives deep in America’s Bible Belt, which is as surprising to her as it is to anyone else.

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