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Monday, March 10, 2014


 by Rick Gray

When the thudding comes,
I know it's not my jumpy heart, or an attack,
but a helicopter racing the real wounded
slashed straight across an unflinching sky. 

I look down, and remember my daughter Rania's
little hands drawing a crayon version of that same
shivering war machine above me
pink and purple and baby blue.

And it almost makes me smile, how cute it was,
until I remember the other drawing,
the one from her twin sister Maria,
who drew her helicopter only red, and bleeding.

Rick Gray has work currently appearing in Salamander and has an essay forthcoming in the book, Neither Here Nor There: An Anthology of Reverse Culture Shock. He served in the Peace Corps in Kenya and teaches in Kabul, Afghanistan.