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Michael Shepler

Peppermint Schnapps

She pours a motel glass half full with Pepermint Schnapps,
Toasting her fellow-doomed-
Addressing them, oh so silently,
Calling each by name.

From where she stood on the second floor balcony
She could look down the crumbling stairs
Of the defunct motel, or out
Across the gray Sahara of the parkinglot
Toward the beach & the sea.
Having driven all day to get here,
Driving out of the lower-case holocaust of her life,
She thought it odd that the oldest thing visible
Should seem so new.

Behind her, past the knobless open door,
Its' plywood skin acned by a spatter of buckshot,
On the narrow bed, a man was sleeping.
A shadow cut across his throat-a shadow
That would deepen until he became faceless, formless.

[...] Read more

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