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   Allegheny Mission, Big Spring Baptist, Community
   Christian Fellowship: Saturday night news scrolls
   every church name in seven counties, services
   more than postponed. We don't need the meteorologist
   to whisper inclement, to warn us to stay indoors.
   We have a window shaped like a television set.

   Tree lights flicker through a scrim of curtain
   next door where the pastor of Tri-Stone Christian
   and his wife plot their empty Sunday, sermon abandoned.
   No one will hear anything about I am the holiness
   we are holy we pray for you and maybe praise his name.
   The plow blinks yellow, scrapes the darkness,

   shivers the drifts on our roofs, the hanging icicle lights.
   Inside, silence wafts through the heating ducts. My son
   is asleep while the heavens smudge from black to red.
   Snow sky. Hydrology. In the cul-de-sac, there's nothing on
   except a few panes of the neighbor's windowglass

   and some tilting FOR SALE signs. There's nothing on
   except the wind pulling at our siding, clouds bruising the sky.
   The news says it was a snow TKO, one for the history books,
   and in the morning, between storms, the neighbors shovel,
   go out to buy bread. I set my son upright again and again
   Ain the high drifts in our yard. I'm ok, he says each time I right

   in his bib pants and boots. The pitch and yaw. Convenience.
   We drive tenderly to the 7-Eleven. Milk. Maybe a newspaper.
   Rock salt. He asks what convenience means. I don't
   have an answer. I think holy. I think light. Later I tell him
   something about comfort. The news drags in the evening,

   and with it, more snow. Our driveways retreat again
   under the onslaught of white. We rest our weary feet
   on the ottoman, listen to the neighbor's dog, who barks
   at the red sky then stops when she hears the thin crescent
   moon wailing. There are truckers stuck on the interstate

   who haven't eaten since yesterday. There are families
   sharing one thin blanket on a high school floor. The news
   says stay in your vehicle, don't wander and get frostbitten,
   don't spin your wheels--you'll only dig in deeper. We are
   glowing with televised radiance so nothing can hurt us.
   The news says this is an ongoing situation.
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Author:Meitner, Erika
Publication:River Styx
Article Type:Poem
Date:Sep 1, 2012
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