Family, Goldenwest Swap Meet

Saturday at the swap meet
she unloads items from the trunk
of her car, her children circling
like moons around a planet.
The boy, about nine, tight and worried,
already there’s a problem,
something is missing,
or stolen possibly,
She is pissed off and will probably blame him.
The girl, a few years younger, has arranged
her possessions: dolls and stuffed animals
sit expectantly. She stands behind them,
stomach shoved out, ready to do business.

It’s getting hot.
The baby is in a walker, pushing off on tiptoes,
her cheeks are heavy and covered with a rash,
an empty bottle swings from between her teeth.
Their mother puts a Mr. Coffee Machine
down on a blanket.
Its casing is the awful yellow
that white plastic turns over time,
from the sun, from cigarettes,
from too many screwed up mornings
waiting in the kitchen.

Published in Faultline, 51%

Photo by Waldemar Brandt on Unsplash