John Sweet The 2River View, 7.1 (Fall 2002)

unfinished scenes from a burning world

nothing definite
this time

a woman
from my hometown
who kisses her husband
on a clean september afternoon
then vanishes

her van found
on a country road near
her house

her small blurred smile
in the newspaper
exactly one year later

and my son laughs with joy
when i pick him up at the sitter’s
and my wife smiles as we
walk in the back door

i feel no guilt

i lay no blame

these small moments
are too precious to stain
with the blood of an
unknown future

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