Poem of the Month
Oshawa Shopping Centre

By Jeramy Dodds

Published on January 4, 2018

I like it when we shop together. All of us
at the heart of a snakeskin wallet. Grocery-bag ghosts
graze on footfalls. A wallet where we’re kept
like photobooth shots. There was a man
who shot other men from hilltops in Afghanistan
to make a wallet of their eyelids. But this Christmas
we’ll use credit. If war were really that bad,
would we allow it? My husband was in that man’s platoon
and pocketed that eyelid wallet. My husband did time
for the theft, not for shooting a child. Weird, I know,
how snow allows angels to be made in our image.
Plastic-bag pelts on the chainlink fence like the husks
of banshees in butterfly nets. The only time there’s wind
is when you try and stop it. ‘Afghanistan’ is such a beautiful word.
I love shopping for people who want for nothing. I love
shopping with you. My husband was sent home
for Christmas after riddling a girl and her donkey.
Now we’re hugging each other beside a makeshift manger.
A mechanical pony waits for our daughter to ask her father
for a quarter; he doesn’t have one. He only uses credit.
Ponies have it hard breaking young girls’ hearts.

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