There’s NO Art in Small Talk.


I hate small talk and how
it always leaves me
syllabically longing.
It’s tedious and exhausting.
It’s hard to get excited
about another conversation
attached to nothing.

I’d rather talk about rare books,
our literary gods,
elevator sex, Lexapro verses,
the friendship between
Elizabeth Bishop
and Robert Lowell,
how sometimes in poetry
the pages weep,
the origins of the word
boeotian (I imagine it
stems from small talk),
how innocence can still thrive
underneath cynicism, and my
innate need to find trouble.

Conversation should be a Safari,
not a trip to the dentist.
It should be like champagne,
shaken and exploding
with bubbly decadence.
It shouldn’t make you feel bad
you haven’t died yet.
It should ravish you and leave you
feeling satiated, weeping
with ecstasy and profound knowledge.

So come sit beside me.
We can move the language
toward enlightenment and
starlight things that help
remind us why we are here.
Or we can beat our tongues
against monotony,
and discuss the weather.
If you choose the latter,
just know I am
dismembering you,
slowly and sadistically,
in my head
one syllable at a time.

-Tosha Michelle


52 thoughts on “There’s NO Art in Small Talk.

  1. This is so spot-on, Tosha! Really, it’s funny and it’s so, so true. I’m sharing on Twitter. More people need to read! Hope you’re have a wonderful Sunday, πŸ™‚

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Well, after drinking too much red wine last night, I’m up way too early! But I’m off to a football game, so I’m gulping coffee to give me the “go” that I need. πŸ™‚ Really did enjoy your post this morning, excellent!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I did enjoy! And yes, it’s my husband’s team (he’s still playing, flag football). Fortunately, it’s the last game of the season!!! Sun shining here, thank heavens. Have a great one!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I love this one! Summing up disdain and loathing for small talk you used some really great words, and perfect imagery. ( I think I misspelled). Oh well.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Trick is, EVERYONE seems introverted when you are a super-cheerful, hyper-aware extrovert.

    I gotta say, though, I’ve had some fantastic convo’s with introverts that I’ve teased out of their cage with food. It takes time, it’s not an instant gratification relationship. You just have to believe that there will eventually be one of those synchronistic existential exchanges with an epiphany at the end. And then nothing again for a long time. That’s why you need 146 friends.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Hey, I grew up in the middle of nowhere in house full of severely repressed introverts (pity me) so I know the drill. Strangely, I didn’t figure out that their disdain for me had nothing to do with my worth as a person until recently. That’s a long-ass time to overlook the introvert-vs.-introvert dynamic but at least I figured it out.

        Happily, I came out of it with the ability to toggle between the two demeanors really, really well but it feels like stripping gears after awhile. My natural state will always be fearless conversation and loud laughter. With strangers.

        Liked by 2 people

  4. That should read “introvert-vs.-extrovert dynamic.” Need more coffee.

    And incidentally, there are Highly Sensitive People who are actually Sensation Seeking extroverts at the same time. It’s a little like being an artistic genius/psychic/comic who is always just a gust of wind away from either laughing or killing.

    I have to hole up in solitary and create cool stuff but not for very long. I have to get out and explore and interact with stimulating people but not for long. It’s like walking a razor wire fence. All. The. Time. Self-medication is my theme song.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. That’s makes sense to me. I’m an introvert with a few extroverted traits. I do enjoy the company of people on occasion. I can be quite vivacious. Overall, though people exhaust me… Yet. I have such a huge heart for humanity and frequently find myself over extended it’s paradoxical.

      Liked by 2 people

  5. I’d rather say nothing than make idle conversation. I truly enjoy it when there’s not enough time to say all the things that I want to say. When I’m exhausted from staying up to squeeze out those last remaining words.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Oh, this is beautiful! The way you have creatively weaved together the second and third stanzas… πŸ™‚ And yes, small talk is a pain, it is. It can get really awkward. And then, people ask you, “Are you always this quiet?” πŸ˜›

    Liked by 1 person

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