by Michael Cantin

E-mails from the Sphinx are rarely short.
They are couched in mystery:
weighty with the levity of ancient dust
and notoriously sartorial.

I sent my letter because
she refuses to use Facebook.
Says she has privacy concerns.
That she doesn’t appreciate
the oblique commentaries
of passive-aggressive mortals.

I just wanted to check in on her.
To see if the years had been kind.
I hoped they had.
I spoke plainly of my many misdeeds.
I apologized for the cruelty
of the desert between us.
I bemoaned having distorted her face.

Her response came in riddles:
enigmas wrapped in metaphor.
Her rage bottled tightly
in antediluvian canopic jars.

She teased at the answers
as she challenged my resolve.
Something was mentioned about Geb and Nut,
and how I was so unlike Osiris
that we couldn’t possibly be brothers.

IMAGE: “Theda Bara Sphinx” by Project Bunny. Prints available at


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Michael Cantin has survived two wars and at least four seasons of Breaking Bad, so you know he means business. His work has appeared in 50 Haiku, The East Jasmine Review, and Melancholy Hyperbole, among others. Residing in Costa Mesa, California, he writes fitfully between bouts of madness and periods of lucid concern. He would love to buy you a drink sometime. He’s just that kind of guy.