Tuesday, 27 December 2022



by Lorri Ventura

Daddy shot the family dog
Because it looked at him the wrong way

Mommy’s ribs
Like two rows of broken wishbones
In the x-ray

Shut up, little girl, and swallow the Benadryl
So you can sleep through the yelling
Fifty-five years later
Oral meds still taste like terror and rage

Those are just baby teeth
It’s okay that Daddy knocked them out
You’ll grow new ones
And he had a hard day at work
Poor Daddy

Daddy’s handgun lived on the hutch
Always oiled
Always loaded
Often brandished in our faces
To keep us in our places

Pray, sweet child of mine, Mommy said
You are my little angel
Daddies can’t kill angels
They just like to try
The little girl refused to pray
To a God who sees
Without helping

* * * * *

Lorri Ventura is a retired special education administrator living in Massachusetts. She is new to poetry-writing. Her poems have been featured in several anthologies, in Red Eft Journal, and in Quabbin Quills.
She is a two-time winner of Writing In A Woman's Voice's Moon Prize.

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