Abe gives Bob a run for his money with some of the things he can build
Fingers sticky with yellow
Taffy that’s days old and saffron
Our family died on Tuesday amidst broken china
Our eastern neighbors intact but our cups
Spilling redundant chai tea.
Wouldn’t you know it, there are some things
Even superglue can’t fix
Oh, how Abe wailed when it separated his ashy hair
A distracted art project that failed
His momma had to cut out great big chunks
She didn’t see the irony of calling him
Her little warrior.
Childhood in the trenches – he won’t see the backpacks
Because he’s pressed to her heart.
Fierce maternal love, a yellow river that’ll follow him
Even as Bob’s hardhat sinks –
Even as his melted crayons become inexplicably red –
Even as he wakes up screaming.
“The winter of love is a cellar of empty bins,”* but
The winter of warfare is just a cellar.
*“Never May the Fruit Be Plucked” by Edna St. Vincent Millay
**All photographs featured in this post were taken at the old Hattiesburg High School in Hattiesburg, Mississippi. Once a registered Mississippi Landmark, the building has suffered everything from Hurricane Katrina to the Great Recession and was heavily damaged by arson in 2007. It is undoubtedly the saddest abandoned building I have ever visited.