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Untitled by Paul David Mena
published in Volume 1, Issue 5 on November 20th, 1994

my earliest recollection:
watercolors dabbed haphazardly 
about a paper napkin.  
that day the blurred horizon 
had no vanishing point - a sky of suns 
that danced in a circle, 
singing songs I could no longer remember.  
in my bow tie and Sunday shoes, 
I never cried when I was told.
the birds were silent then, 
hovering above while I counted each one.  
they had no names, yet they all knew me - 
they watched while I played in the sand after dark.  
they scattered when my name was called, 
the floodlight's reflection still shimmering 
in the pool on the other side of the fence.
inside, the halls were narrow, 
casting shadows at impossible angles.  
I stared at my fingers 
while water washed the sand away, 
a clockwise swirl against the blue porcelain.  
then, the long march.
fighting sleep, the contours of night 
assembled behind the billowing curtains, 
laying the toy soldiers to rest.

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