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Two Hundred Words--2


by John Riley


South Pole

The girl with a face that said "Antarctica" walked out of the bushes behind the mall. She held a kitten to her chest. I never knew why she was there. Maybe she was digging up worms and feeding them to the kitten mouth to mouth. Her face was cold and I wanted so to warm it but I was paying my debt to society and I've learned when your heart almost falls to the floor you still have to maintain some dignity. I carried on, sealing my chest shut with leather-strap will, picking up trash with a forked stick.

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Water Gauge

It stormed the night before Carson broke his neck. An oak's trunk shattered over the water gauge and waited for us to show-up the next afternoon. We talked it over. Why don't you dive off, Big Balls, Carson said to me. I looked at the jagged trunk end. It only stuck out over the edge of the creek. Could I dive out to where the water was deeper? My balls are too big, I said. Might get caught. If only I had on trunks. Carson smirked. Chicken shit, he said. He crawled out on the trunk. I scratched my crotch.

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