Interstate

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  We play games in the backseat, the children and me. Is it bigger than a breadbox? Smaller than a house? Everyone’s a good sport before lunchtime but, by afternoon, our minds are tired and the games become more brutal. … Read More

Listening to Birds

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  Because I am not Dave’s wife, I hold my ear to his daughter’s chest every day, when the other children are quiet, sleeping. I think of her as his second heartbeat. I watch my friends’ children while they work. … Read More

Tokoloshe

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  I.   There were no paved roads in Mbuzini until President Samora’s plane crashed into our mountain. Now I watch the taxis snake their way up to the monument twice a day. Sometimes I glimpse a white family in … Read More

Hyacinth Gaze

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  In the strain and hazy fragrance of The garden of Miradouro de São Pedro De Alcântara, a mosaic of cobblestones Lies locked in Minerva’s fixed watch, The perpetual gaze of her opulent bust; Through ceviche scents and pastel tones … Read More

Roots

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  When I think of you I think of a goat tethered to a pole, you inside your cubicle leashed to the spiraling end of a long chain of events. Hello you say, day after day. How may I help … Read More

Fog

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  Whiteness in the air like snow falling sideways.   The van in which a man can stand rests in a driveway, turned off.   Fumes from the tires leave tracks in the fog. How much work it takes to … Read More

Missing Hiker Kept Journal of Her Ordeal

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(headline in the Boston Globe)   Abandon the path, even once, if only to pee, and you’re lost. First text, undelivered—“Im in somm trouble. Call AMC. Somewhere north of woods road”— When I missed a blue marker the hour before … Read More

Phoebe

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  I will, at the end, strike a Delacroix alternative deathbed pose,   prop myself up, chaise-style with pillows so I can be viewed more mournfully   as I consider what I might declare as beautifully as this oak’s yellow … Read More

After Khe Sanh

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  My brother as if in a body bag— heard me laugh, couldn’t see but knew the curve of my throat when I threw back my head, lips open, taut over my teeth, felt my staccato breath against his opaque … Read More

The Weight of Mourning

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  Four-cornered night, the faucet plinks— plinks a wet thousand’s thousand of droplets each stood just once to sing upon the silver bell of bathtub stopper. In morning, a small boy forms and collects his body; he lets it curl … Read More

Vienna 1933-34

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  “The trouble is—I am an old man— you do not think it worth your while to love me.” —Freud to HD   The dog lay by his feet during their sessions, A lion-like chow with a bad temper, or … Read More

Confessions

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  The first time I was stabbed, sunlight napped on the thunder. A receipt caught fire beneath a Sprite can offering its smoke. Raindrops splashed from your skinhead. You were Augustine. If he were a woman born on a boat … Read More

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