by t. zoEy benally

my friend just called, the ringer set to alien stun gun
the original saaniidotcom is gone, taken away
you just never know when wind is going to lead you astray

she took care of my friend when her knee twisted
the wrong way and ligaments severed from bone
she was there for chats lit by silver moon lamp light

the shower chair was brand new then, had yet
to morph into a computer chair, an extra
dining room chair for the inevitable welcome guest

"see the shower chair my mom got," our injured friend said
"my saanii chair." we laughed, laughed and then called
each other saanii, until saaniidotcom was born

then it stuck, static clung like light plastic
grocery bags, fit because it rhymed best with her name
saaniidotcom came to life, always in t-shirts, jeans

i can still see her low key smile, hear her sigh,
content from steaming pasta plates topped with spaghetti
sauce from a jar and microwaved for 30 seconds, hot

i can hear her calling us, "hey, saaniidotcom!"
ronniedotcom, i can hear her laugh in the aisles
at Albertson's carrying bags of green leaf lettuce

i didn't want to look, was afraid to look, afraid
that i would forget her saturday afternoon grin, that
i would not remember how her hair curled out of ponytails

buy flowers for me today she always said, and wear red, never black
red the color of peppers sliced on salad, "see my daughter?
see how well she has done? she is your daughter now."

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