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January 2019, vol 14 no 4

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Dian Duchin Reed

Everything and Nothing

We’re driving along an avenue lined with businesses, each of which is surrounded by a chain-link fence topped with razor wire. The businesses are not busy, the gutters are flowing with garbage. We stop at a red light, and my sister locks all the doors. In front of us, a pedestrian slowly crosses the street, interrogating every windshield he passes. He stops in front of our car. His eyes, which have seen everything and nothing, glare in our direction as he up-ends a large paper bag, dumping its contents – wadded papers, fast-food debris, assorted waste in dribs and drabs – onto the street. The light by now has turned green, but no car moves until he resumes his shuffle and reaches the sidewalk.

the soft drift
of termite droppings
harvest season