by Marina Rubin

i come to work with a duffle bag, sweatpants, running shoes, but the socks are missing. i ask my friends in cubicles, the Equinox, the Lucille Roberts lovers, if anyone has an extra pair. during lunch i splurge on K-mart socks, when i return a surprise pack of athletic four is sitting on my desk. i pick up food from the fridge, the strawberry crunch salad that i brought from home is bow-tied with cold Adidas socks. then a sudden intercom announcement – someone left socks in the ladies room. while i run to pick them up, another pair is laid out on my keyboard in the shape of a rose, pink nylon socks hang from the phone receiver. later an urgent delivery, box the size of HDTV, inside – one mickey mouse sock. all day long socks, socks, ankle socks, knee-hi socks, ventilator socks, some new, some worn with holes and smell of feet, spring up, everywhere, in conference rooms, in office supply closets, like snow balls, like ping pong balls. a running joke for the night, i leave the office with socks to last me a lifetime, but the joke is on them, my coworker-pranksters, next time i will ask for panties

MARINA RUBIN’s first chapbook Ode to Hotels came out in 2002, followed by Once in 2004 and Logic in 2007. Her work has appeared in 13th Warrior Review, Asheville Poetry Review, Dos Passos Review, 5AM, Coal City, Green Hills Literary Lantern, Jewish Currents, Lillith, Pearl, Poet Lore, Skidrow Penthouse, The Portland Review, The Worcester Review and many more. She is an associate editor of Mudfish. She lives in New York City where she works as a headhunter on Wall Street while writing her fourth book, a collection of flash fiction stories. Her website is

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