Peter Stuhlmann


an afterthought, arrives
in January, 1973,
and begins her journey
in the rented duplex
on Marcil Avenue.

Our mother beams
like a split plum, Jennifer
is more Canadian
than any of us.

In her eighth summer
she won't be cornered
by little neighborhood
thugs: Are you a Nazi?

At school no one will
persuade her to write fuck
in a notebook: It means
I am happy.

She won't have to surrender
to our father's blitzkrieg
of hands; urine flooding
like guilt through her
pajama bottoms.

She will learn to love
easily enough,
her heart as big
as the Laurentians.


The 2River View, 4_1 (Fall 1999)