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Guest Writer

When it's time to say good night
by Shane Pope

ld men whistle
patriotic tunes
while fireworks boom
and a gas powered barbeque
cooks a slew
of hamburgers and hotdogs.

I grab a beer that's been nestled on ice
while Jimmy's ex-wife
looks over her shoulder unleashing
that infamous smile
and I know all the while
what the future has in store.

Soon the kids will go to bed
or upstairs at least
they'll swear to it like a drunken priest
that they're not tired
and while the world is on fire
they would at least like to see it burn.

Frankie will cut a deck of cards
while Jackie runs into the backyard
and spins like some vexed angel
she told me once she felt like a stranger
toward most everybody but especially herself.

The piano that sits beside the door
I bought at a garage sale
when Celeste was four
will collect an ash or whiskey stain
but sadly enough will never get played.

By midnight, my wife
will look perplexed
and stare at my indifference
her waning eyes of marble gray
reflect the light of passing day
and love I will carefully say
has its dimensions.

In open space
there are creases of silence
which is when the night slows down
and in beds of air
there is sleeping grace
that is lost as soon as it's found.

So when the last flash in the sky pops
then fades away
and mischievous boys
begin to look toward another day
and all you have come to know
is yet a bit of the same
it is time to say good night.

See more from Shane in our archives.

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