I wish I could say it was nice

to hear your voice today,
but of course you’re still so fucking
charismatic, making the whole room
laugh even from behind a screen.
That picture of you was taken a year ago,
I’d guess, before my name was something
sour to be avoided. We were once
abundance and opportunity. I wonder,
from your bedroom in Pennsylvania,
if you scan the screen for the mangled
pixels of me in the back corner, just
out of frame, or if you just take
your earbuds out when I speak. 
I tell myself I am doing this
for the money, but I suspect we both
know this is not true—but hey, no one has
to know, right? Still and ever present
is the thrill of the secret.
We are coworkers avoiding
the torture of small talk
with someone you used to love.