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B. Fulton Jennes

I Buy Earrings for My Dying Sister

Some would call the purchase foolish—

her birthday is months away—

but silver or glass? is my only indecision.


The silver pair are mirror-bright

and show my reflection upside-down—

a gray-haired woman I don’t know,


looking for a comfort that isn’t there

in the metal, or anywhere. I choose

the glass pair: simple squares,


with a grid of sure, straight lines

and one tiny dot of red on each,

a vanishing point on the horizon.