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  • Special Delivery
  • Teresa Cader (bio)

from the archives of the United States Postal Museum

Tell me, someone, is it timefor James to arrive by Parcel Post from a mile away,a mere fifteen cents of a boy, eight months old,sent by his parents to stay with his grandmotherwho waits on the porch under a rippling flag,an infant dressed like it was Sunday morning churchwhere sweat streaked his thick hair,James, son of Jesse and Mathilda Beagle,about to be dropped off in Batavia, Ohio, in 1913,insured for fifty dollars, according to postal reports,tucked into the mail bag like a puppy,too frightened to cry, stunned by housewivespetting his face and cooing, not knowing wherehe's going or why, who the large man ishis parents trusted to carry him across ruts and stones—Tell me, how is the boy holding up?Baby James, as the newspapers called him,seared into his prememory the rough canvasscraping his legs, then hands lifting himinto flashing sun and something flapping at his face. [End Page 116]

Teresa Cader

teresa cader is the author of three poetry collections, History of Hurricanes, The Paper Wasp, and Guests. She has been awarded the Norma Farber First Book Award, the Journal / Charles B. Wheeler Poetry Prize, the George Bogin Memorial Award, and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Bunting Institute, Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, the MacDowell Colony, and the Massachusetts Cultural Council. Her poems have appeared in Slate, Poetry, Harvard Review, the Atlantic, and many other publications.