Blackbirdan online journal of literature and the artsSpring 2018  Vol. 17 No. 1
an online journal of literature and the arts
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This is no place Jim said. Kicked out a cigarette. Took my shoulder, pointed through a gas station at his daughter folding silverware into a napkin. She set two Styrofoam cups out—for us—on the glass. Can’t tell yet she’s pregnant. Drug dealer boyfriend wrecks what I give her, there’s nothing I can. He motioned down the road. Remember that meth lab? I remembered intensive training. Charcoal remains. A house and our blue masks. The kind of information that was to have: notice if striking strips are torn off matchbooks, batteries drained, gloves, the odor of the ash. It was early. We drank coffee. On our way out his daughter snagged my uniform with her hand. Smiled long. Turned away from Jim’s back. Take care of my dad. I nodded. We watched him smoke again, the grey dirt and warped railroad tracks. Smells like hot acid, he said when I came to stand beside him. Her baby’s gonna breathe like that.   

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