“Enthusiast” by William J. Joel

This scene was something I would never have
expected, little old lady, thumbing through
a rack of comic books. It wasn’t that she dressed
outrageously, or gelled her hair in spikes,
or had twelve piercings in each ear, or showed
a tattoo of her mother when she rolled her sleeve.
She was simply middle-aged, a simple sweater,
shorts and sneakers, nothing one would notice
in a bookstore, let alone with Superman.
Which makes one wonder, what else do they
hide from us, these frail old women, unobtrusive
in their manner, smiling, slyly as we hold the door?
Are they listening to some rock song, heavy metal,
screaming through their brains, while planning for
the rally they’ll be riding in next weekend,
dirt bikes spewing mud and rock when mama
hits the turn, enthusiastic in her game?

William J. Joel has been teaching computer science since 1983 and has been a writer even longer. His works have appeared in The Blend International, Common Ground ReviewDASH Literary JournalLiminality, North Dakota Quarterly, and Trouvaille Review.