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Contents Page: October, 2010, vol 6 no 3

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Glenn Coats

Deer in the Headlights

Late autumn. The brown Pontiac is the color of plowed soil. It swallows the narrow back roads. The big V8 vibrates and the car quivers like a horse. Kenny’s car. His head up to the ceiling. Chris rides shotgun. I am in the middle.

Getting dark. We park for a moment and run to the creek which has chilled our drinks all day. The cream de cacao is thick like syrup. Wash it down with a can of beer.

faces at dusk
half-eaten apples
beneath an oak

A month passes. I remember a car behind us. I feel the grass behind my back.  There are voices above and around me. A picture window. A light.

End of winter. The nurse is asking the same questions. ”What is your name? Where do you live? How old are you? What grade are you in?” It is the middle of the night and she is shaking my shoulder. She wants me to wake up.

Summer dream. The night is warm and the air thick with moisture.  I see the tree. Pieces of glass are breaking like waves again and again. There are figures behind a picture window. Someone I know asks, “Is he alive?”

road’s end
I check the bark
for scars


The haiku “faces at dusk” first appeared in Paper Wasp


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