Ten Pairs

by Amber Fellows

Every tear escaped behind a mask at dinner unnoticed, a pattern of paw prints on pedestrian streets, the sound of a toothbrush connecting with the floor—their significance well known by the cat at Prospect and Cross St. relaxing this morning. It’s my birth year and the prices went up on fresh thrown butter, criminal feminisms, and the recycled money for ten pairs of rainbow milk Saucony Peregrines.

We are in the streets.

I went to Eastern along with two grey coots while Pete worked at the Willow Run factory. It was all consuming—two buses filled with snobs—the community thought this was The Second Coming. With a military-like attitude toward retirement we went to a demonstration and then to Arhaus to shop for a cream Chesterfield. We took our stinking bodies to the side of town where Sidetrack had burned a fire straight through the core.

We are vaping.

In pink pumps I lost three friends and slowly read the headline: The fun tomato, shishito, beans, and exceptional headaches experienced can’t beat a vaccine appointment on a 50 degree day. In the teacup of a frog’s springtime coronation and the image of my wife’s bright straw hat and tankini I dreamt of border excavation. This is when sesames strung up in the covered porch were added to the land contract thoughtfully late.

We are fumbling towards repair.

Everyone worried about the draft were asked to observe the following rules: There was a lot of fear in single family homes since time began, different values of mass incarceration between wards. Artists on Maple St. paying $1200 for an apartment and the new crew coming up on straightened sidewalks; I don't know their edge or if they can handle themselves. Get the bills paid and hawk badly needed newspapers on the corner. At least the residents can heart react.

We made new patterns.

We got into groups against wars and balanced in our tennis shoes against historic houses. In the loam of different approaches we asked the same questions and exchanged practice notes. All participants are safe and there is trust, so how does this feel? I remember that backlash is inevitable and comes from missing critical information. In a low voice the spider leaf crests in the spray of sunlight and water. A window smashes. Something needed is let in.

(Photo Credit Kari Zeissky)