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Modeling Clay

Men behind the wheel, and kids were clay.

Published onAug 20, 2023
Modeling Clay

Photo by Marvin Zettl:

I never cared much for hanging around.
The picture is my father.
Photogenicity was not in the genes
inherited, but I am taller
than the other kids who sat at the table
Thanksgiving days. A mother
whose large family lived nearby,
and one indirect aunt
whose cigarette dangled clandestinely, while the family,
in their Christianity, awkwardly but of necessity
pretended not to see the stomped-out butts
on the curb beside the yard.
where touch football games were prizes
after the feast. Women never played; they washed
dishes, after cooking and serving all day.
It was America, model 1960.
Men behind the wheel, and kids were clay.
But I broke free, fell on the floor, was swept up
by the times, and became what was never allowed,
an avowed disbeliever in their hierarchy,
different, but equal.

W. Barrett Munn is a graduate of The Institute of Children’s Literature. His adult poetry has been published in New Verse News, Speckled Trout Review, Volney Road Review, Book of Matches, Copperfield Review Quarterly, and others are forthcoming.

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