I don’t remember where the rag came from originally
but my mother kept it in a stoneware crock.

Soft as cobwebs, its cotton compresses in my fist
while I dab its corner in lemon oil.

The gun cabinet has glass doors curving around a cherry frame
that I polish with tiny circles.

Her shotgun and rifle butts sit in a row,
their barrels wedged between divots in the wood.

I lean to the side, level my eyes on the work.
My reflection hovers like a ghost across a Remington.

For a second I see her face staring back at me,
her translucent fingertips brushing along the trigger.


INHERITANCE by Lorrie Ness



Photo used under CC