The Bullet Between us is Soft

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Contributor: Chanterelle Atkins

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Futuristic recharging stations,
The clicking and motion of brick-red liquid running through tubes,
Being rid of toxins.
Hours pass, my dad, at dialysis.
We take turns reading Wesley McNair’s poems out loud.
Dad tells me one particularly exhausted day,
“The bullet between us is soft.”
I have to pause
To try to interpret.
“Yes, Dad,”
Steadying a tremorring hand.

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Chanterelle Atkins is a native Mainer, living in Wiscasset with her husband, Kevin. She graduated magna cum laude from Emerson College with a B.S. in marketing communications. She is employed as Director of Administration at the Portland-based healthcare consulting firm, Compass Health Analytics, and previously worked at Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General and McLean Hospitals. In her free time, she enjoys poetry, picnics, skiing and fly-fishing. She is passionately dedicated to continuing education in the areas of administrative management and human resources, in which she holds professional certifications.


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