Out it comes,
and it’s winter again. She holds her breath.
The aliens haven’t adjusted well. They carry inhalers,
wear masks. State-issued
driving, stay inside. None of this air is translucent. It turns
and it turns out this city’s in a rut, rated 9th
overall. #9 Toxic.
She licks her lips, a bit
Fire Engine Rose, a hint copper. A peach pit on the counter—
the fruit already in her stomach—
ground up, or bit down
that small core of cyanide
a bird, a dog, a child. Some aliens
lobby congress for stricter policies: to lessen
the scent of old eggs and black toast. The people shake
hands, nod and grit
statements about basic chemistry, differences in atmosphere.
No burning, fire-
works okay with USE CAUTION. If breathing
is troubled, take heed.
- The Smog That Rides the Salt Lake/Davis County Line - December 20, 2013