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Sunday, February 12, 2006


by Rochelle Ratner

She reads the headline, thinking: what a great story. She
turns to the story, anxious to read about some crazy who
went to his father's or grandfather's grave and asked how
to invest money or whatever, then lost the money and
blamed the ancestor. She misreads Austrian for Australian.
She's actually confusing Australia with Japan or China, or
thinking the Australian bush where primitives, she's
certain, still believe in the spirits of their loved ones. Then
she reads it's the family grave of a financial advisor. She
reads that the man trusted him with his severance pay,
and got bad advice. And she thinks of her last conversation
with her father.

Rochelle Ratner's books include two novels: Bobby's Girl (Coffee House Press, 1986) and The Lion's Share (Coffee House Press, 1991) and sixteen poetry books, including House and Home (Marsh Hawk Press, 2003) and Beggars at the Wall (Ikon, October 2005). More information and links to her writing on the Internet can be found on her homepage: