Magazine article WLA ; War, Literature and the Arts


Magazine article WLA ; War, Literature and the Arts


Article excerpt

His root beer sweats on the Formica table.

Her eyes fix on the frosty mug and the bubbles

rise like little prayers she once sent up.

The small apartment shrinks.

She stands and walks toward the kitchen

but pauses in the doorway and turns

because nothing will do.

Chairs on spindly legs remain upright.

She leans against the door frame,

hoping the wall will open up and take her

into another world. She notices where the cat

has clawed upholstery.

Smelling of aftershave and cigarettes,

he speaks of honor and sacrifice. "I regret."

Hands dutifully folded in his tidy lap,

eyes down, he pronounces a city name,

a time, a date, and a list of circumstances.

Man of starch and medals, he does not use words

like bone or flesh or brittle,

but she hears them anyway and thinks of her grandmother

on too-thin legs, falling because of a breaking femur,

not the other way around. …

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