I dream your parents throw a party — at least,
what they optimistically call a party; post-nuclear disaster
they gather the survivors in their ‘70s-era rancher,
decorated in beige, long and low and comforting.
It is the antithesis of modernity — which, after all,
got us into this mess in the first place.
And it's not that bad, as parties go:
someone makes punch, plates of canapés.
Your uncles are drunk and jolly; your aunts
string paper lanterns across the yard.
You are the only one out of sorts,
bruised and weary on the back steps,
holding a power drill loosely in one hand
as if there is a problem you can fix.
Dessa Bayrock is a PhD student and ex-journalist currently living in Ottawa, Ontario. More importantly, she is growing a surprisingly healthy jalapeno plant on her balcony and is open to botanical advice.