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EARSHOT / Edward Kleinschmidt Even though the bathroom door is Closed, you can hear the shotgun going Off. It is held underwater, a toe pushes The trigger. Powder-burned bubbles float On the turbulence. This is an hotel room where The maid wUl soon appear, Ustening through The headphones she isn't supposed to be Wearing. The elevators haven't been going Up or down for days. Room service has been Slow. You can just imagine, in the long Minutes between meals, that whispering in Winter, speaking in spring, shouting in Summer—communication is seasonal—red tomatoes, YeUow corn, green peas have moments, moments, Not meant to last. Jets falUng from The sky shake the leaves on the trees. You Hear long range and point-blank: the chef Whipping egg whites for meringue; on TV A white beating a black at Howard Beach. There Are several ways to cut a cake, depending on The number of guests. We've rolled the cask Of wine down the lull and it's broken open On a rock. This is a tradition with gravity— Serious if you take things seriously. I Uke TeUing time by the clock in the shape of a cat— Eyes going that way, and taU going that. Stick your finger in the socket to find out. I can get rhapsodic over the tick-tockiness. A friend's toy gun ran on batteries. Everyone Would have to play dead—it was part of being AUve. I always dream Tm asleep When Tm asleep—there are no other dreams. The Missouri Review · 252 ...


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