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Thursday, July 11, 2019


by Judith Terzi

and maybe the two albino rats
came next. And the rock collection.
Smooth oblong rocks he'd paint
faces on. And maybe shells came
next, and then stamps, though
he hardly knew where the countries
were on his globe. He liked
the biggest stamps the best, ones
with faces on them, faces of men
he could become. And maybe
the aquarium came next––red-tailed
sharks lurking behind rocks in his
bedroom with Jack Dempsey
cichlids and sucker fish. And maybe
the model building came next:
ocean liners with tiny people he'd
wave at, fighter planes with grounded
toy pilots. And tanks with soldiers
he would salute, but who never
saluted back. The tanks––stuck
between his childhood bed, with its
beige striped bedspread, and a shiny
maple highboy where he shoved
all of his desires, all of his heartache.
For later.

Judith Terzi is the author of Museum of Rearranged Objects (Kelsay Books, 2018) as well as of five chapbooks including If You Spot Your Brother Floating By and Casbah (Kattywompus Press). Her poetry appears widely in literary journals and anthologies, has received nominations for Best of the Net and Web, and has been read on the BBC. She holds an M.A. in French Literature and is a former educator who taught high school French for many years as well as English at California State University, Los Angeles, and in Algiers, Algeria.