Girls and Guns

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When I was young

we ran around the neighborhood

shooting our pretend guns

then one weekend day

Dad took the girls to the store

and armed us

my sister, my cousin and I

with real toy guns

cap gun that smelled of gun powder

that made a loud sound

when you pulled the trigger

good old Dad

who never had a son

must have loved buying us guns

Was he sober when he did it?

When he took us out in a field

and killed a jack rabbit

so sad for that rabbit

sadder for the mallard ducks

he brought home from hunting

and Canadian geese

beautiful birds

I held its web foot for a time

did not speak about

its intricate design

Chickens were different

chicken feet were scrawny

the neck scrawny and bleak

we plucked them for stew

Grandmother always showed us

the gizzard

as she would cut it in two

making a covenant with chicken

and her dumplings

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Girls and Guns

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