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The Fireman's Least Favorite Hiding Place

One night
watching tv,
Roberto fell
cigarette asleep
on burning couch.

He awake in pain,
clothes in flames
and stumbled out
the front porch.

Above the orange blaze
he heard the screams
of his younger brothers
stuck in upstairs bedroom.

He charged in the wooden back door
yelling wildly,
while his brothers crawled
thru a side bathroom window,
to escape unharmed.
smoke burning his eyes,
Roberto dropped to his knees
as the red flames licked
his fingers, the way the
neighbor’s dog always did.

He remembered playing hide and seek,
and hid in the corner closet
waiting for it all
to go away.

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