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September 2017, vol 13 no 3

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Jo Balistreri

At the Stoughton Opera House

At intermission women stand in a long line for the restroom. Across the way, men come and go as the women inch along. An old woman in line, tall and thin in granny glasses, peasant dress and a big brimmed hat, turns to the one behind her and says with conviction, this needs changing. She crosses the aisle to the entrance of the men’s bathroom, asks each man who exits, how many left in there?

Down to two, the women’s line still crawls while men amble in and out. One man decides to stand guard with and for her. So ahead, he says.

The women who had laughed behind her back, even the one who said loud enough to hear, she’s batty, lower their eyes and change lanes.

a wren's churr
in the fading light
footsteps on the caliche