My father lived in a dirty dish mausoleum, watching a portable black-and-white television, reading the Encyclopedia Britannica, which he preferred to Modern Fiction. One by one, his schnauzers died of liver disease, except the one that guarded his corpse found holding a tumbler of Bushmills. "Dead is dead," he
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The pony and the deer are trapped by tanks,
and the lady with the guitar is sad beyond words.
Hurtling across the sky, a missile has mistaken
a vehicle for a helicopter, exploding in a ball
of white flame. Upside-down birds—red specks
of knotted wool—glow above the sideways trees.
Hidden among plants, a barefooted boy waits—
like the divine coroner—aiming his rifle at something,
enjoying the attentions of a gray doggy, or maybe
there’s a bullet already in his head.