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The Trooper MAG
1. Raindrops hit the old glass making
Drowning red and orange traffic lights
I wish it would snow.
And hold my breath, struggling to cry
I turn away from Mom and watch the buzzing Exxon sign.
Swollen in the rain.
2. The hospital light scratches my retinas,
Like an emery board on fingernails clipped too short.
My nose has that piercing pinch that comes before sobbing,
But I sneeze instead,
And Mom steps away from the hospital bed.
“Charlotte, talk to him.”
No words. Not about this.
I take my dad's balmy hand, and it tenses meekly.
I watch the nurse.
She watches the catheters,
The tributaries that dip and coil before
He squeezes my hand. A tiny firm hug.
3. Like a shattered Christmas ornament
Or being as tall as the kitchen table,
You can only cement something into memory
When you know it is gone for good.