Superhero AA by Aidan Chafe
He arrives late wearing his civilian costume, grabs the last chair in our circle. George is rambling, kicking around a tired story like a Hackysack—something about his ex-wife, a final notice and too many Coors Lights. When the floor is his he cracks his concrete knuckles, stares at his steel-toed boots, introduces himself and recites the code, “Hulk here. Alcoholic.” Begins chartering his past: each morning waking up shirtless, head an explosion of anvils, waist-deep in destruction. Today though, progress. When he felt rage (roommate insulting his lady—comment about thunder thighs) instead of running his roommate’s face through drywall he ran a bath. “You know I never considered myself a bubble bath guy.” We cork our laughter before it spills, generously applaud his efforts toward anger management, plunge our stories into nostalgia: plastic ships, rubber ducks, so as not to put ourselves in any hot water.
Aidan Chafe is the author of the poetry collection Short Histories of Light which was longlisted for the 2019 Gerald Lampert Memorial Award. He lives on unceded Musqueam territory (Vancouver, BC).