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Wednesday, August 14, 2013


by George Salamon

  My granddaughter's kitten stayed with me for a week.
  Her name is Mila.
  She's affectionate and playful.
  I bought her a furry toy mouse at the market.
  She batted it around the living room floor.
  She hid it under a dining room chair.

  She got bored and nestled against my arm next to the computer.
  I picked up the mouse.
  "Made in China," it said on the label.
  Where else, I thought.
  But I couldn't imagine the worker who made Mila's mouse.
  I couldn't see her face, hear her voice, watch her walk.

  I wanted to talk with her.
  What toys did she have when she was little?
  Did she love or hate school?
  Was her third grade teacher like Miss Grundy?
  What did she and her friends laugh about?
  Did her life turn out as she expected?

  I'll never find answers to my questions.
  In the global economy, human voices and fingerprints disappear.
  Transactions mesh into a seamless web without them.
  It's better, that way, for Return on Investment.
  Hansel and Gretel could follow pebbles home to human dwelling.
  There's no path for going back anymore.

George Salamon lives and writes in St. Louis, Missouri.