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Contributor: Jennifer J. Pruiett-Selby

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My neighbor next door said
God doesn’t exist because
he’s never seen the One that
allowed his son to die in Iraq

My fifth grade teacher said
there’s no such thing as ghosts
or the supernatural—everything
can be explained in scientific terms

At the mall last December, a crowd
held signs saying the world will end
soon. I wondered why they wasted
their last days standing in the cold

My mother told me that I must believe
what feels right in my heart. Dad said
he doesn’t have all the answers, but he
knows there’s certainly more than this

My big brother, who’s in college, said
the Mayans were wrong ‘cause we’re still
here. He knows a girl that saw her cousin’s
ghost, and a guy who practices voodoo

TV shows provide evidence for the possibility
of extraterrestrial life, and we’re probably not
the only creatures capable of emotional
connections—like trust, or fear, or love

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Jennifer J. Pruiett-Selby is a teacher and mother of four, with a Master’s degree in English from Iowa State University. Jennifer currently lives in very rural Iowa where her column {just a word} appears in the local newspaper. Her work has been published in Red River Review, Matter Monthly and Four and Twenty.


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