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American Landscape

He divides the bills into three distinct stacks:

 

The ones he must pay.

The ones he should pay.

The ones he cannot pay.

 

He writes the checks, stuffs the envelopes

and gently applies each stamp.

 

While upstairs, his daughter cries

for something lost

or possibly,

something found.

 

The teenager next door lights matches

and burns a smiley face

into her arm.

Better to feel something than nothing at all.

 

Somewhere -far away- a door slams

and a heart is broken.

 

All the while, the earth rotates west to east

and the clouds gather to occupy.

The Sun struggles to show injustice

but the Moon strongly denies.

 

-Clayton McSheridan

 

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Taken on February 5, 2012