Coffee & Dolls
By April Bernard
It was a storefront for a small-time numbers runner,
pretending to be some sort of grocery. Coffeemakers
and Bustello cans populated the shelves, sparsely.
Who was fooled. The boxes bleached in the sun,
the old guys sat inside on summer lawn chairs,
watching tv. The applause from the talk shows and game shows
washed out the propped-open door like distant rain.
It closed for a few months. The slick sedan disappeared.
One spring day, it reopened, and this time a sign
decorated the window: COFFEE & DOLLS.
Yarn-haired, gingham-dressed floppy dolls
lolled among the coffee cans. A mastiff puppy,
the size and shape of a tipped-over fire hydrant,
guarded as the sedan and the old guys returned.
I don't know about you, but I've been looking
for a narrative in which suffering makes sense.
I mean, the high wail of the woman holding her dead child,
the wail that filled the street. I mean the sudden
fatal blooms on golden skin. I mean the crack deaths,
I mean the ice-cream truck that cruised the alphabets
and sold crack to the same deedle-dee-dee tune as fudgsicles.
I mean the raw scabs of the beaten mastiff, and many other
Did some stuff this morning in preparation for apaulled's birthday this Friday, which I wanted to get done Monday rather than Tuesday because we are supposed to have SNOW for part of the latter, then met neotoma and gblvr for lunch at a Red Robin, which I had never been to before and where I had a really yummy teriyaki chicken and pineapple sandwich that I am now craving more of. Must get some canned pineapple. Had to cover the Grand Slam convention (or rather the coverage of the Grand Slam convention, since obviously I didn't go). Every year it feels slightly more redundant.
Tonight older son had fencing, so we had dinner early, then watched the Digging for the Truth episode on Troy, "Of Gods and Warriors," which was neat -- they went to Greece and Turkey looking for evidence of the origins of the Trojan War and the backstory to The Iliad, and they explored Bronze Age ships pulled up from the sea (we saw one of those at Mystic Aquarium that Robert Ballard had excavated). The most interesting part was how much geography may have changed -- Ithaca likely not where it is now. And since we had The History Channel on anyway, we left on Deep Sea Detectives, which was doing "Blackbeard's Mystery Ship" -- what is believed to be the wreck of Queen Anne's Revenge off Beaufort, North Carolina. I want to go work for one of those historic shipwreck archaeology companies in the Outer Banks!
Also, I am shouting out love to ldybastet, celandineb, cjmarlowe, thescarletwoman and dementordelta for assorted reasons -- they all know why.