All the Time in the World
by Erin Parker

As I waited for my life to start,
I kept myself alive with an infusion of percussion, bass and rhythm guitar.
Thumbed through the stacks when I could get a ride to a record store.
Bought British 45s with glossy picture sleeves when I had extra money
that I earned from babysitting for people at church.
I filled the spaces in me with music.
I had holes made by questions that had no good answers.
Already knew how to make dollars stretch like hours.
Scoured thrift stores for the right clothes.
Sleeveless mock turtlenecks with a zipper up the back and
black velvet pumps with a pointed toe.
Liquid black eyeliner, powdered skin, pale lips.
Bangs and berets and pencil skirts.
I waited all week, counting the days until I could blossom
and I would dance until my feet were bruised.
Saw Dance Craze again and again at the midnight movie,
found the under 21 clubs in L.A.
The smell of cloves and the weekend rows of Vespas.
At seventeen I was a sparking ember
waiting for the wind to pick up.

AUTHOR’S PHOTO CAPTION: Erin listening to music at 17.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: There have been times when music is the only thing that makes sense to me. The first time this happened in my life, I was 17. It was 1983, and I was a Mod.


Erin Parker
won her first Creative Writing contest when she was 11, and has been writing ever since. Her work has been published by Uno Kudo, Red Fez, Drunk Monkeys, Cadence Collective, Lost in Thought, Timid Pirate Publishing, The Altar Collective, Santa Fe Lit Review, Lucid Moose Lit, and the Alice in Wonderland Anthology from Silver Birch Press. Erin was nominated for Best of the Net 2014, and is the Sr. Flash Fiction Editor at JMWW. Her collection of short stories, The Secret and the Sacred, was published by Unknown Press and is available here.