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Matt Gilbert





Murder Mystery Party in a Bomb Shelter                            



Thunder. Lightning. Ominous.

Her voice as dry as the gin in drinks.

Someone is secretly, unknowingly,


a murderer. This is the game, right?

To know what someone means

despite every word they say.


Women dance in the cramped space,

the filtered air smelling of plastics,

their legs wispy as grown wheat


under chilled lights. They are rebirth

after the settlement is gone.

No one wears their wedding rings.


There is a bunkbed and a bookcase

of self-help. Speak as if you’re quoting

the truth. I tell her half the human


race is abandoned outside,

and she rubs her hair. The concrete

collects body heat. My lioness,


your tennis bracelet’s heiress teeth

shine on my shoulder. There’s a bunkbed

and an AM radio. Three courses


of canned corn. Another glossy girl

is immersed in fallout. We’re all

guilty of wanting to be the only one,


but the soulmate isn’t romantic,

just suburban: close enough for touch

only when touch is needed.





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