September 2002 / Volume Three / Issue One
Linda Wandt

I slowly, silently hang up the phone.
He walks into the kitchen & I tell him
the wait is over.

I want to hold him,
need to feel the solidity of his form,
to hear a kind word of comfort from my father.

& he knows.

He knows that Steven,
my best friends father who had taken me in
and treated me as his own
has died of lung cancer @ age 38.

(Christians donít cover their dead,
and I distinctly remember being able to see
the stitches holding his eyes & mouth shut.)

He says I should learn from this,
then bums a smoke
and walks away
mumbling something about
how a 13 yr old kid
could get cigarettes in the first place.
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