Category Archives: Uncategorized

For George

In fourth grade, our teacher noticed we were the only two who could carve, draw, and paint. She took us to the museum and before El Greco, we looked at each other and knew we were standing before a painting of terror and awe. His tormented brushstrokes, even the way blue died into his titanium […]

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For Those Killed in Wars

I dreamed last night that there was a shrine half a city block in size. A thirty-foot bronze fence enclosed a mountain of human ashes and bits of broken possessions like cookware, children’s toys, and pieces of plastic whose function could not longer be identified. These were the unidentified remains of people killed in the […]

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For Ken

You were a head taller than the rest of us, with a lean body clad in white T-shirt, black jeans, rumble belt, and leather jacket from a street our parents wouldn’t go to. You were a man among our nervous tribe of scrawny kids because you didn’t care about stupid things like graduation. We scattered […]

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For Alma

The summer wind sets the curtains flapping, the ends of the cords snare-drum the plaster. Garlic and chili waft from a kitchen and a sax player on the street blows hard. She lays on me, panting, black hair flying, eyelashes wet, damp air like opium. “Are you hungry?” She says she’ll be right back. Five […]

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For Ellen

You were a young driver in a cream-colored coupe. The rubber tires squealed around an alpine curve and then there was no sound as the car overturned. It left your parents dead and you dazed, so to age with just one memory. Though your inheritance and the insurance meant a comfortable house, you wandered, your […]

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For Frank

How many times can a scar heal over? The ones carved into you with a backhoe? Or the ones you pave over with concrete only to crack open in an earthquake? Do tears ever dry up? Or do they fill the hollow left in your chest by grieving, a private Dead Sea sloshing when you […]

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For Mackenzie

You were the oldest of seven, and the table was never full. The town suffered in soot and smog, the clang of gears drove off the birds. You couldn’t tell your left from right. Dropped out first. Then you were laid off, and your father was laid off too. Killing yourself, you thought, would feed […]

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For Marc

Five of us in high school— a phalanx unbroken until we each went off to different colleges. We’ll stay friends, we promised; see you at winter break. Your favorite joke was, “If you fart, laugh, and cough at the same time, you’ll die.” You walked out on a ridge and were caught in headlights flashing […]

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For Karen

Four o’clock in the afternoon. Sun slants the trees on families picnicking on the Bermuda grass. You make your backpack into a pillow and try to sleep on a park bench with just a flannel shirt for warmth, while Robert, in his chrome-studded black leather jacket and skull-stud earring talks to another guy, saying he’s […]

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For Larisa

Dying must be closing. It must be shutting eyes. It must be curled fingers. Instead you stretched your arms and reached out for others, and finding a secret, caressed it like a stone, let out a sigh of peace, and spoke its name aloud. And your friends took that name tattooed them on their skins, […]

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