We dine on gruel and despair,
our Lenten deprivation.
We hear the creatures scurry
in the attic. We hope
they will dine on the cheese
we’ve left in the traps.

The dog hides in the bathtub.
Once he only hid during storms.
Now he seems to crave the cool
enamel, the clean curves
holding him.

The teenagers keep their evening
plans, despite the threat
of precipitation. You light
the fire, in the hope
that the hearth will lead
them back to safety.
I finger the well-worn beads
brought to this country
in a different century, prayers
lifted in a different language.

Inspired by Dave Bonta’s “In/mates” and Luisa A. Igloria’s “Niyebe” and ““Depth of Field.”

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