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May, 2020

Dogs screech at each other

Across the vacant street, their

voices rise hysterical and then

suddenly pause like when my

father bellowed over bridge

games if my mother played

a losing suite and he

barked Dina you’re stupid

and she shrieked

like a dog hysterical while

the aunt and uncle

yapped soothing sounds

which never soothe.


Abruptly the dogs offer

silence filled with cicadas

breathing heavily like

my father while his wife

weeps in the new-found space.

What could she say? We

remain trapped carpeted

with fear and revulsion,

soft as a pandemic

outside the house silent

except for a small child

sobbing beneath the halted


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