- for my son

I checked the mirror, you asleep
in your car-seat, then I began
backing up, forgetting to check again,
hitting something. A man in a red shirt
holding his arm as he walked
around to the passenger window.
He was black but transparent. I knew
what he was thinking as he looked in,
cradling his elbow. He studied the
cracked dashboard, the shredded seatbelts,
the tufts of fake sheepskin stuck
to the tar & gravel on the filthy floormats
& he sighed, released his arm, then
stepped wearily back like a militiaman
at a roadblock, lowering his
machinegun, waving us on.

- Jefferson Carter