Creative Writing News

Ursa Minor: Poetry inspired by real Northern news

“Whitehorse man gets 30 months for operating meth lab in mom’s basement.” CBC. Aug 24, 2016.

Property Values

from the arctic entries of their bungalows, the old

women, the young mothers, the middle

 

aged fathers watch their tulips grow

nervously – in may

 

it’s been know to snow but only

sometimes, soon the grass

 

will have to be mowed, the fireweed

shoots along the road have gotten over

 

being plowed but theres still

salt bins on the drive ways, thin

 

white film like milk

like sugar, like 

 

coke, still :

it might be safe to let

 

the kids out with the tomatoes during the day so long

as you bring them in at night and ignore

 

the rushed way the fire department has arrived,

the unusual

 

odour of burnt cough syrup, old metal, batteries, smells

better associated with houses whose flowered

 

wall paper is peeling, the glue

all licked off, soon the freshly-groomed

 

back yard dogs sound the alarm behind

white picket fences, bark

 

at strangers in alien get-up hazmat suits like super

heroes wearing plastic shower curtain panties at five

 

in the afternoon, next door the blinds

go up and down, blinking

 

disbelieving eyes, cars with stick

family bumper stickers slow

 

down as they roll by one

by one  after soccer practice, one by one

 

/perfectly organized second at a time, children

leaving snotty mugshots on the washed

 

windows, go home, watch

cop dramas with their parents while sunday

 

comes and goes

comes and goes, dinner

 

in the oven and CBC on the radio while

somewhere down the street and down

 

in the subterranean sub-below, someone

something somewhere sometimes smokes

 

suspiciously on  the back burner, submerged

silent in a grey sea of suburban property values


Photo: istockphoto/J33P3l2

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