by A.J. Odasso

You put your watch—
worn, Timex, cheap—
in my hand. I was nine.
You said, “Listen,
those oil drums behind
the garage are about
to blow.” The coil of
my digits unwound.
I was nine. You said,
“Lit trash fell out-
side the burn barrel.
The oil will catch.
Get your brother
and your sisters 
in the car.” I was
nine. And you said,
“I'm going back. I'll
try to put it out. Get 
the kids in the car
and drive if I don't
come back.” But Dad,
you did. Every word,
each tick. We lived.
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About barkingsycamores 183 Articles
Barking Sycamores is a literary journal entirely edited and operated by queer neurodivergent people of color. We publish poetry, artwork, short fiction (beginning with Issue 3), creative nonfiction (beginning with Issue 8), and hybrid genre work (beginning with Issue 9) by emerging and established neurodivergent writers as well as essays on neurodiversity and literature and book reviews (beginning with Issue 10).

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