One weekend morning I mark
our backyard with a breadcrumb trail
while youíre steeped in the shower.
The trail flares out like a comet,
a centipede curled into his death.
The symmetry is gorgeous.
As you dry off, I tell you: Leave
behind the compass, the barometer,
the metal detector. Figure it out on your own.
I guide you to the trailís mouth
and fire the emergency kit flare gun.
We needed the dramatic beginning.
My distress signal is a traitor.
It listens to itself, pings out, diving
to bury itself in a stack of leafs.
Tapping a fingernail on my fatherís
stopwatch hanging from my neck,
I ache for your failure. I refuse you clues.
I await your unsafe return. Without
breakfast, I imagine you hungry and weak.
I know youíll eat my desperate message.
Jenny Sadre-Orafai writes both poetry and prose. Her first chapbook, Weed Over Flower, was chosen for publication by Finishing Line Press. Her poetry has appeared in: Wicked Alice, Lily, Verse Libre Quarterly, can we have our ball back?, FRiGG, Plainsongs, Literary Mama, Poetry Midwest, Dash, and other fine journals. Sadre-Orafai's prose has appeared in Rock Salt Plum and in the Seal Press anthology, Waking Up American. She currently serves as poetry editor for JMWW and is an Assistant Professor of English at Kennesaw State University. (firstname.lastname@example.org)