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She stands facing the slab. In the honest corner of the sky, birds
bother with each other while they fall and fall, then slip back up
through bright. It’s the end of one era or the beginning of the next,
but never both. Never two of them happy at once, ma and daddy,
who each sling tiger darts against the side shed when the other isn't
looking. Never both the whip and the board, steak and the chocolate,
the wind and the wind’s sweet cousin, the rain. Just a rummaging,
an opening in the sky big enough to fit an elbow. Jane doesn’t favor
such brightness—prefers the gully, where the water runs until swallowed
by ice or by air, but never both. Her daddy falls from the short door,
swaying stupidly by the driveway. He waves her over, but she does
not come. Her mother’s voice from an upstairs window: “a work of God
I never loved you to start.”