When I picture my mother in her thirties in a red dress
Swooning to Mario Lanza’s Granada
On 78rpm, my memories sound
With forgotten revolutions per minute
Turning to roses and laughter and dance steps,
Turning to Europe in the vast sunset of war
And the static of questions childhood could not form,
As history ate through the grooves
With crackles and bomb blasts
And the beauty that cannot last, but does.


They could not decide what to take first,
So they took everything.
They took everything and promised to return,
So the others took the nothing
They had left and hid it away.
They had no trouble hiding it.
Weeks later they returned
Demanding the nothing they left behind.
The others refused, they refused,
Claiming nothing was all they had.
So they went away to plan.
They sent their scouts
To search for the nothing.
They searched all morning.
They peered into forests.
They overturned rocks.
They parted the water
But always found something.
Determined to find nothing
They said to surrender nothing
Or be slaughtered,
But the others refused
And prepared for battle.
So the battle lasted years.
They forgot about nothing
And kept killing over nothing.
Bodies burned into nothing.
Nothing was left behind.
Legend has it, nothing was never found.
To this day there is still nothing.