On Notice

by Alan Soldofsky

Alan Soldofsky

This time of year, the wind speeds up
and sweeps wildly down from the ridges.
So, they're shutting the power off.
It's time to see what I've kept in
case of an emergency. There might be
cans of crushed food in the basement
or spring water expiring inside plastic bottles.
And perhaps some waxed fruit, though
that could be hard to swallow.
After the streetlights go out, I'll pry open
my garage doors, the way thieves do,
and hunt around with my flashlight
for what's left over in cardboard boxes
from last week's dinner party. I just
don't want to find mice corpses
the cat has left behind the broken-legged
ottoman, with its ripped upholstery,
or anything else moldering on
the spider webbed shelves where we've stashed
old jig saw puzzles and the MRE's
we purchased at the surplus store in case
of an earthquake. We're told to plan ahead,
to know where we would meet up if we got separated,
if our little piece of the planet burned,
and how we'd survive at least a week
without the grid working, after we used
everything on hand that could be salvaged,
with the chicken spoiling in the refrigerator,
and the last bags of ice melting in the coolers
And we're just too goddamned past it to move.

Last updated November 03, 2022