One Hundred Moving Parts of Love  •  poems by lenny dellarocca

After the Blast

I went out for a loaf of bread. A pack of Lucky Strikes.  On the radio, President Kennedy said the Soviets would not be permitted to keep missiles on Cuba.  And then I ran out of gas.  I ran out of gas as I was taking a shortcut through a field where I once made love under a tree in the middle of nowhere.  A blinding light. The sun must have exploded, an egg breaking in the middle of a sizzling pan. Is anything left?  Nothing is left.  When the world shakes that much everything falls over like toy soldiers in a living room storm.  Everything disappears.  Nothing was ever here.  I Think I had a woman.  Yes, I married a girl from a town that doesn’t exist anymore.  I’m not sure it ever did.  I can’t remember her name.  I can’t remember mine.  Were there children?  What of the children?  Maybe there was a boy or a girl with braces and freckles, who ran to me when I came home.  But who gets to go home when the world is smoke in the eyes of god?   I kept walking.  The sky turned white with fear.  It was like the afternoon was going to faint.  And it did.  It’s why I can’t remember anything before the blast.  Why my name is stuck somewhere deep inside me like a leaf in the mouth of a man dead three days along the banks of a river.  A man without fingerprints whose wallet is a washed-out life, blank as this harrowing sky.   How long have I been a ghost in the middle of the world?

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