Homecoming (Langenthal)

Photo by Jou00e3o Cabral on Pexels.com

by Daniele Pantano

issue 71

The afternoon bell peals the children out of school. 

They say it’s great to see you after all these years. 

You can’t look at them. But you believe them. 

The missing parents are wading through the rust. 

You can’t make yourself believe in the end of winter. 

Back in the eighties, the papers called this place a Neonazinest

Several cats have been laid out upon a tarp. Clear signs. 

Porcelain bowls. Twigs pointing toward the birdbath. 

There are no spontaneous protests going on anywhere.    

On March 13, your mother shot herself in the head.

The names of the rivers keep changing. A downpour.

Where are the birds? A lifting and flying above the landfill. 

Nearby, time is running out. You’d better stay here. 

A Tamil man hung from the streetlight. A murmuration.

A golden flag with three rivers. There is so much to lose. 

Far from here a perfect Klee sky. A handful of dark ash.  

It is March 14. The indispensable and necessary.

There’s a mute crowd coming from the other room. 

You are the crowd coming from the other room.