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Saturday Matinees

Almost evening. The smell of seaweed hanging on whispers coming up from the beach. I sit in the backyard, rearranging thoughts, trying to fit shapes into what's missing in that vast mosaic I have been piecing together all my life. The last blush of the sun fading from the sky, the day dimming like a picture theater before the film begins. I think of the Alberton Odeon matinees, back stall seats on Saturday afternoons with wall to wall westerns galloping across childhood to deafening cheers and stamping feet. From Hoppalong to Roy, a generation breathed the smoke from six shooters blasting out in the black and white world of cowboys and trusty steeds. Heroes stood out for their good deeds, the bad deserving of the bullet that always found their evil hearts without the spill of blood. Death was clean, no more than a crumpled fall, hands clutching an invisible wound. The gore was kept off screen. Boyhood backyards became extensions of motion picture sets. I come back. Shadows have swelled into a thick dark. Awoken from their daylong sleep, mosquitoes circle my head like thought clouds in search of blood.

Copyright © | Year Posted 2023

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Book: Shattered Sighs