“In Need of Water”
by Mia Gathers
The smothery smell of cooking tobacco drifts from the tarpapered barn.
A young man’s arm hands as he pours the water into the steaming radiator.
The car starts with a pop, the young girls watch.
Both have a boneless, bosomy softness that stops at the neck.
Suddenly, two men burst like a storm through the screen door.
The ice in the center crack of the table melts down, dripping, sheering, wanders back
across the cracking floor.
He bends low, hissing, tramping dazed toward the back door as the window panes clatter
“Reckon we could bother you for a little water,” he said.
“Help yourself,” she replies.