Looking Up From The News

by Maggie Kennedy

She expects smoke creeping toward her through the shorn trees.

She won’t be surprised to feel the floor tremble,

to open the door and find scraps floating along the biting gust—

palm-size remnants, a congregation of charred color.

She waits for retreat of engines gaining elevation, and the screams,

the screams melding into stadium rumble.

Yet children are walking to school. A boy steals

his friend’s cap and runs away. The neighbor exits

his door at 8:02 a.m. as usual and folds into his car. A flock

of sparrows play harmony

to forsythia that must have bloomed overnight. Another

Monday with its pent-up trepidations,

its lamentations for the lost weekend, its stored chance for an hour,

a moment to catch the eye of another,

to delve into the sheen that is starting to spread toward her.

An ordinary day she would have passed by

but for this debt. This lease she can only repay by grabbing

what was taken without recourse.

Musical composition by Victor David Sandiego

Maggie Kennedy’s poems have been published or accepted in Meat for Tea, Neat, Zone 3, Naugatuck River Review, and The Pittsburgh Quarterly Online. She has also had haiku and haibun published in Frogpond and cattails. Kennedy earned a Master's degree in English and creative writing at The University of Chicago. She is a freelance writer/editor specializing in healthcare topics and lives with her family in a Chicago suburb.