Small town, creative commons pic

Poem: ‘Screenplay for a Homemade Movie’


A version of this story ran in the December 2016 issue.

My cousin & his wife married
their next-door neighbors.
This is as romantic as Pleasanton gets.
First each other,
then after eight years, a couple of divorces.
Like bowling alley mechanics:
after the smashes, everything set up again—
same houses, different spouses.
For a while it was awkward
at the grocery, at the hardware store
but my cousin’s wife is happier now
—she’s a whole different person.
Pleasanton’s best had hives
about the hanky-panky
but after the neighbors remarried
the town forgot the starting lineup,
gave its blessing to two sets of newlyweds.
My cousin’s next-door neighbor’s wife
is happier now. She hears my cousin
only if two windows are open
& the ravens pause in bringing on
the triumph of their small, shrill song.


Photo Credit: Terrabella Studios