Hanford’s Nuclear Family

The table’s been set, the family seated.
The children are rowdy, dinner’s ready for eatin’.
Hands are clasped and grace is said.
“We are thankful for family,
warm home, and stomachs fed.”
Beneath rosy lights, a sinister story’s unsaid.
Yet bright eyes look on, at the grand table spread:
Plump berries jostle in a bowl,
Fresh greens were tossed in dressing,
Steam rises from a river-caught fish,
A meal ripe with nature’s blessing.
Day by day, week by week,
The family lives by stout routine.
A fashioned kind of utopia,
An actualized American Dream.
The son has sports practice,
The daughter goes to dance.
Yet many training clinics
soon become the doctor’s advance.
Warm dining room lights
traded for cool fluorescent glare
The table--hard metal--is prepped for different fare.

Four turns to three, to two, dwindles to one.
A fission of the soul, a waiting to be none.

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