Unsaid 7: from JOHN THE POSTHUMOUS, by Jason Schwartz

posthumous

The porch light: this scatters the cats. I sweep the patio every two weeks, and clean it with bleach in summer and fall. The wind in the pickets, I should think, terrifies the mice. But now I have lost the sun again. A squirrel drowns one Monday in a flowerpot. I bait the traps with meat, and cut the branches along the path. I trip—you see?—on the last step.

The object nailed to the tree small and wooden, but not a doll.

The Rowan children would feign death on the doorstep of the first house; and in the yard of the second house, before a shed and a hedgerow; and in a field of weeds beyond the third house, next to a barn, the name and the hex sign upside down.

A newspaper account describes a boy of five, caught beneath a maple gate for sixteen hours—outside the Milton house, on Bird Road, in Whitebriar, Pennsylvania, 1953.

In folklore, the orphans cross one road and then another—having traveled due south for three days, or perhaps four; and having discovered a breach in the greenery; and having surmounted a low wall or fence–arriving at your door in the middle of the night.

The trap in the crocus patch: this breaks the rat’s neck.

The patio: two columns, a lantern, and a wrought-iron bench. Doll parts are arranged on the lawn. A few of the taller trees—these are diseased. Needle blight, is it not? I water the annuals in the afternoon. The dog pursues the birds quite ruefully, it seems to me, falling just before the porch door. I set the tacks on rags and cover them with ash.

Advertisements
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s