Oregon 2112

The air has been smoke
for years.

Children play
ring around a dead tree,
in colorful head-scarves,
red and white, blue and white,
purple, green and gold
and red as blood melons.
Their feet are the color
of soft earth.
They run and sing
holding laughter in
grubby hands.

A witch snatches them,
catches them
in her cloak
and takes them home
to make bacon.
The sun goes down radish-red
in the evening.
Two Humvees are cresting
the hill.

—Harvey J. Baine