A Balanced Diet by Nikki San Pedro

The voices in Nikki San Pedro’s poems search for soothing in the chaos of Los Angeles.

A Balanced Diet

Celexa with a side of Wellbutrin
My breakfast combo at 20 years old
The SSRI required lubricant
My dry spell the NDRI consoled
Ativan ordered as a midnight snack
When insomnia gnawed like a bedbug
Feeding hunger of a panic attack
Just as effective coulda been a hug
An appetite starving for organic
Vitamin D, THC, yoga, dogs
Self-pacifying by the Pacific
Whenever my spirit’s arteries clog
LA, CA: Equal parts cause and cure
Gifting poison til you beg to be pure

Road Trip
July 20, 2015 – US Route 101, Paso Robles

A leisurely drive on the 101
SF to LA: I am homeward bound
Mortified podcasts to make the ride fun
Till the semi cuts me off–cuts the sound
A T-bone collision at freeway speeds
Sorry Cory Corolla, no more drives
Beneath my new windshield dress, my thigh bleeds
Now I know why they say “Seatbelts save lives”
Signs posted to warn of intersection
Or as I call it: poor freeway design
Cory, dear friend, my source of protection
Scrapes and bruises–my injuries benign
Survived a crash and a decade depressed
How can I not believe I’m #blessed?

* * *

Nikki San Pedro was born in the Philippines and raised in Canada. She has been adulting in Los Angeles since 2009. Car culture, health care, education and humaning in the U.S. in general have surprised her with culture shocks aplenty, but the year-round snowlessness has somehow made it worthwhile. She’s currently mastering creative writing for social justice at Antioch University and helping kids tell their stories with 826LA.