Mark Turcotte

Back when I used to be Indian
I am six maybe seven
years old, restless, pretending to sleep
in the dry glow of the cast-iron
stove. My sister's back is warm
and still against my own.
A straw in the blanket scratches my ankle.
Somewhere in the darkness
my mother and her husband grunt
and hiss, hands over mouths.
I blink.
Across the room a buffalo snorts,
nudges the yellow Tonka truck
with its nose.

From Exploding Chippewas, Northwestern University Press
© 2001 Mark Turcotte
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