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[GUEST POETRY]

>> Monday, September 27, 2010

Ballistics 
 by Sheila Tombe




















Research on the web confirms my suspicion; the small hole
in the back window of my car (parked as always
under the cherry and pines) was made by a projectile
traveling at a speed upwards of 760 mph.

So.  Probably not a pine cone, then.

The cracks radiating across the glass from the entry wound
are myriad, ready like the trigger on a booby-
trapped bomb. I touch the surface; immediately,
it implodes with a sigh heaved downwards; surprising,
uneven chunks—compelled by gravity—fall into the car
(at about 10 mph, I suppose).  

Yet still attached in its corner isthmus, in case I might forget,
a bullet hole.  Angle of entry dictates that the shot
came from a height; one roughly equivalent, as I guess,
to a second-floor apartment. . . like the one across the street.
(Unless it was borne through the leaves from the branch
of an intervening tree? Unlikely perch for a Friday night sharpshooter!) 
But then, I imagine, this shooter was neither
sharp nor flat, whistling through air in tune like Elvis
Costello singing “my aim is true” (which was first recorded
for black vinyl rotating
at 45 rpm). 

No.  I conjecture this stray bullet, looking for Alison
yet not finding her, is the product of a late-night session
featuring shots of tequila, or worse, traveling at speeds
as comfortable
as a swallow.




"Born and raised in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Educated in Belfast and Glasgow.  Employed in Madrid; Hamamatsu, Japan; Columbia, SC; and Beaufort, SC. Retired by a river. Tolerated by cats and dogs.  Fed by literature, music, and light. Enchanted by ideas and engrossed in making words work. Now at law school--at 51--and fascinated." 
- fr her home page on HubPages where she writes as Teresa McGurk .


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