My father was dedicated to his work.
No one painted more perfect dots
on dice or better understood their language.
One black dot is the doorknob death uses to enter.
Two are a man’s fists behind his back.
Three, a man and woman with a child.
Four explains a tragedy. Five is a parade of
desperate women in snow. Six, an orchestra of ants
performing the symphony of human emotion.
All of this on a single die? I asked.
“Yes,” he said, “the world is a small place.”
First appeared in The Black Warrior Review, University of Alabama, Vol. 25 No. 2, Spring/Summer 1999; and is also in The Soup of Something Missing.