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Rochelle Gregory


The carnival came three or four times a week—Convoys
parked in our living room.
The clowns circled around with their grinning faces—My daddy
scared in his closet.
My sister and I rode the merry-go-round—Us
cowering and clinging to each other.
The frozen horse leapt into the air—My mama
paralyzed in the kitchen.
The roasted peanuts filled out tummies—The doctors
offering the candy.
Daddy squinted to see how high I was—They
noticed only his needs.
My head floated from my body—I 
stood on the balcony edge.
My sister longing for a prize—She
binged away to nothingness.
The balloons were promised to the sky—Pop—my father
dropping to the ground.
My sister and I anticipated the carnival everyday—We 
waited for the other bomb to drop.