10.3 (Spring 2006)
Top Girl
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Brent PallasListen


Finding His Way

for T. Burch

Following his footprints afterwards
they saw the long trail of a stain
where he began upstairs. And looking back
they almost smiled thinking how
he must have sat there holding the gun just so.
And still it went off leaving him only blind
but still breathing. And he must have known then
how he had not done what he needed to do.
His mind a mess making its way back down
those steps where the extra shells were kept.
Knowing this
was just another mistake he had made.


The Stone Age

There are Stone Age people living now,
In the Space Age....
       Survivors of the Stone Age—R. Marcus

They don’t know what they’re missing
raincoats, spiral notebooks, hockey
on Saturday afternoons. Living deep

in the woods, picking up whatever falls.
Shy as children, distrustful of strangers.
Without the glint of choice they marry young,

carrying whatever’s needed, snaring
whatever comes. Old at thirty. No seeds
of possibility bloating pockets, things to bring

in from the rain. Dividing the least stem
of existence with a dull edge, waking, eating,
sleeping, leaning close for warmth.


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