That girl runningby Liza Porter
down the dusty road that black and white photograph of the naked black-haired girl running toward us, her mouth round as a dinner plate smashed, pieces falling from between her teeth and scattering behind her on the ground, that girl running, you know the picture, I know you do the one flashed through the world, news wires fat with horror our soldiers still obeying the masters of war, smoke and dust rise in her wake, that girl running, her skin melting as if the whole world’s on fire, the whole universe gone mad. I see that picture, that girl running, through a forty-year smokescreen, no Life magazine in my lap its cover art the color of new blood, its black and white pages shiny, slick as the red that poured from all those children all those young G.I.s. The man who snapped that picture, that girl running, what did he do after the shutter clicked, after he took his eye from behind the viewfinder, what did he do after he leaned back slightly from the nude length of that girl running toward him? © 2005 by Liza Porter. All rights reserved.