“We should get a cat for Cole,” said Brad to Alice. “A pet would do him some good.” Alice looked to Brad from behind her “#1 Mom” coffee cup. She pulled the muffin he was about to grab away from him. “Remember what the doctor said?” Brad’s face fell, but
The Deer I They would fire on three. Red leaves, yellow leaves, green leaves. The shot—like the birth of his son. The leaves. The animal. The son cowered in the bushes. The father took the son’s gun and counted. One through six bullets. The son had not fired the gun.
Toads are unlovely: plump, bumpy, gawkward. But I’ve been fond of them since I was young. Their inoffensive, comical dignity amused me. Gaze into a toad’s lovely golden eyes and you quickly become its friend. Why, then, did I shoot a toad in my backyard when, age twelve, I had
The trees are old in the forest of Arden. They hold many secrets. The greenest grow at the border of the tame world. Supple firs and bendy pines peak above sprawling hardwoods. Tall, wide oaks dot the perimeter charming the senses with song birds and the fluffy-tailed squirrels. Lush moss
the sky was there distorted at the edges but there clear crystal blue his wings burned his mind locked he battled the Plexiglas sky over and again his head bumped hoping for an improbable escape I was afraid his death would stain
Venturing fingers among the tangle of blackberry thorn canes, questing their dark elusive prize, plucking each plump bundle, then easing it from the labyrinth of defending claws, I discover one gleaming berry ridden by a petite beetle, her flat, yellow shield an extravagant contrast against the obsidian fruit’s glistening bulb.
Kenya made space in my heart for love. Before her, there was only me and vague words. We think about hearts being a specific size or shape. In fact, they are intentionally flexible by design. They have a purpose. They hold space within us. We condition them to extend our
The night of a storm, a duck banged into the window. That’s Quackers, my daughter said. Rain fell onto the window. Branches tapped the walls. I came to the window. There was the duck in the mud on its back. It did not move like a duck, but like meat
“Thence up he flew, and on the Tree of Life, / The middle tree and highest there that grew, / Sat like a cormorant.” John Milton The cormorant finds me walking aloneand dives right intakes over my left ventricleand changes my blood into salt waterI feel held for the first
I was riding a blind horse down the center of town Horns honked Women screamed Men heehawed mouths wide open– all I could see is calamity; the horse saw nothing, followed the guidance of my gentle nudge of the reins on his neck showing him his way home after cashing