Rappahannock Review | Chris Mink
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Forked Roads by John Francis Istel
“How many candles do you see? Mother? How many? Can you see how many? Sit up.

Waking by Karin C. Davidson
“‘Sleep, sleep, sleep,’ my mother says. But I cannot help thinking about waking the next morning.”

The Box by Greg Bottoms
“Danny Glover—a fourteen-year-old white kid from Smithfield, Virginia, not the actor from…”

Form-Fall by Marco Wilkinson
“A tree evaporates into the universe and falls back to earth: timber to paper to coffee cup to compost to dirt.”

Swept by Emily Vizzo
“Startling, this body-bump of asterisks finding its way…

Sea Lion by Emily Vizzo
“The stink of him came to me first, a salty hit of kelp…

Mario’s Grocery Has No Cameras by Chris Mink
“In lane twelve a young mother wearing…

During the Tornado, I’m Thinking of Stars by Sara Henning
“They’re calling them sisters, funnels grafted…

The Dead Wait on the Living to Go on Living by Kim Garcia
“The chairs wide-mouthed and silent in each others’ presence…

Mountain Aubade by Kim Garcia
“Inside a blue-cupped palm, yellow tipped mountain, wild dogwood, pine…

Mending by Ruth Foley
“For once, I am not thinking of a place…”

Doubt is the angel of our time by Ruth Foley
“Of any time, I’d wager—any movement…

Cleansing Flights by Ruth Foley
“The temporary unfurling of the rhododendron…

Pitcher by Will Cordeiro
“I’m such a flirt…

Wild Horse / Wild Deer by John Casteen
“Deep beneath the night, its lidded vault of stars…”

Figure by John Casteen
“As in, cuts an elegant…”

I Saw You by JC Bouchard
“I saw you on the roundabout…”

Chris Mink

Mario’s Grocery Has No Cameras

 

In lane twelve a young mother wearing

powder gray sweatpants she didn’t want

for Christmas shakes her head no.

Her son reaches to tug at the hem

 

and rattles off the name of every candy

like his very own morning roll call.

All bubblegum and chocolate: present.

On Sunday mornings like this one,

 

when church folk blow what beer money

missed the collection plate,

and someone’s grandma passes out

yogurt samples with her skeleton hands,

 

I feel more American than Broadway.

Behind the register a small tag says

her name is Deidra, and she lasers barcodes

the way a conductor signals for downbeat,

 

and we shuffle forward, following

a rainbow-ribboned march, stamping salsa

on special. Deidra watches the bag boy

for signs of what might later become

 

a great fuck. If he asks what time

she gets off, she’ll say soon. The young

mother decides on a credit card while

her son pockets a pack of watermelon gum.

When I grab a chocolate bar and slide it

into my shirt, the little man smiles to let me

know it’s okay. He presses his tongue into

the space to show me what the fairy took.

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