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Alien in My Backyard

By Johanna Haas

PROMPT—No one noticed ...

It was not long ago when lawns were covered

with clover instead of grass.

It’s not that long ago when towns were covered.

What kind of poems does one write in Rocket Books?

We still have not reached the promised Space Age

Without the Soviet Union there was no need to learn


my pages fly across the room with a gust of wind.

Bringing news from the west, information becoming and

Blowing in answers and squirrels and cobwebs and

A halt to thinking.

The boxes clatter around,

like ice cubes melting

in the sink.

They made promises about getting a better life for their children.

That was the reason for all of it,

and they took everything we gave

even for the kids.

It creeps out from beneath the pool cover,

Lizard-like, splayed fingers and big eyes,

The Alien!

who came to give us the universe,

and got stuck in a backyard pool.


Johanna Haas lives in the hot middle of the United States, in a cottage with four lions. Her work has appeared in Bewildering Stories, Chamber Magazine, Young Raven’s Literary Review, and Do Geese See God?. When not writing, she’s playing with plants/animals or tying a long string into many knots. Johanna writes from Murphysboro, IL.


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