I’m tired today
like others, four hours sleep
in thirty six to begin a week
end that will end with twenty eight hours of wake straight.
I’m in a hole, even my
son hates it when I have to
leave now – how do one year olds know
these things.  I’ve learned to
ignore the anger I feel when my children
express love to me.
That whole thing is unnatural.
I’ve become unnatural –
like my daughter dancing
in the rainbow pools
at the Wal-Mart parking lot.
We will both leave stains
that will not come out – hers
on the passenger seat on the way to her own.
Mine on everyone else.
Me and the car will both be crushed
with stains intact.
At least the car will bear
the imprint of my daughter.

About Rick: Rick Crabtree lives just outside of Batavia, OH, where he sleeps very little and spends as much time as possible with his two children, son 2, daughter 6. He is currently studying for degrees in English and Education at the University of Cincinnati Clifton campus. His work can also be found at Eastfork, an online literary journal put out by the Clermont campus at the University of Cincinnati. Rick is a co-administrator for the Riverside Writer’s Collective with Joel Peckham, a workshop group that meets in the village of Batavia.

Return to Issue 3.