Bread Crumbs

C. L. Bledsoe


My uncle’s soul was all vermilion and fried chicken, grease
stains sweated through his aura and dribbled behind him 

like the path of a slug. I tried to walk in his footsteps, slipped
and slid behind him, sometimes to the ground, sometimes right 

into his back. He would turn, grab my arm and lift me up
like so much laundry in the air. Up there I could see his bald patch, eggs 

in the bird’s nest in the ceiling of our porch who thanked their mothers
they were born sparrow, gnawed bones spread over miles 

like the corpses of winds. He would set me down, hold
me until I was steady, my arm in the air saluting, then turn, plod forward 

and never fall. There were children in foreign lands starving
for what fell from him, starving for the air he ate like chocolate.



(photo by Casey Pearson)