It’s his first 4th of July alone.
Sovereign sky mimics
lusty fireflies playing tag;
blazing trails that zigzag
over family cookouts.
He orders out too much these days.
And his twin bed is bigger. Colder.
Tonight he makes shadow puppets
on the closet door.
They bounce to beats of intermittent booms,
under patriotic strobe light
sneaking through miniblinds
he bought on clearance
Heat makes us all crazy.
The ceiling fan looks like an
overgrown Black Widow
who has just devoured her mate,
cackling at the concept
of visitation rights,
and alternating holidays.
(freshly published along with 2 others at Underground Voices Magazine)