When I become a county bus,
I want to be the one

whose sign blinks “Out of Service”
on every single run.

I’d like to dirty dishes
for someone else to clean,

and watch them fill the sink with suds
or load up a machine.

One day I’ll be a turtle in a basking heap!
Top of the food chain and all day to sleep.

I’ll be a spiny softshell
with a prehistoric beak…

Indifferent to your noise,
seven days a week!


Sue Blaustein retired from the Milwaukee Health Department in 2016. She published her first book – In the Field, Autobiography of an Inspector – in 2018 and a chapbook The Beer Line in 2022. She blogs for Milwaukee’s Ex Fabula and serves as an interviewer/writer for the Veteran’s Administration’s “My Life My Story” program.