We ran outside, into
the afternoon, to the large pine
in the backyard, the nook
at its base like a space between
arms. We ran
as if to a third parent,
when we heard a shot inside.
You had both hands covering your face.
How long would you need to hold yourself?
I was not afraid of staying there
until we were swept over by flashlights,
nor of the voices that might pull us back,
but that your voice had been shot, too,
broken and blending with the pigeon sounds
echoing the neighborhood.
My eyes never moved
from you as I took out the music box I had
stolen from the master bedroom.
Andrew Brady is currently a senior at the University of New Hampshire in Durham, studying English. His work has recently appeared in the school’s literary magazine, Aegis, for which he has also worked as an editor.