Sherman Alexie
Sherman a Alexie’s Substack Audio
Radioactive Love Song

Radioactive Love Song

A poem

Seen from satellite view, the abandoned
Uranium mine on our reservation
Is an earth-scar that’s shaped
Like a haphazard guitar.

The sound hole of this instrument
Is the open pit
Now filled with water
Made turquoise 

By irradiated waste.
I grew up six miles
From that deadly place
And only a hundred yards
From the road traveled
By the transport trucks.
I inhaled uranium dust—
A thousand thousand grains—

With every breath.
None of us, especially 
The young, knew
How dangerous it was.
There’s no mystery here.
There’s no need
To find motive or alibi.
Mr. Death is waiting

At the airport for his Lyft.
He’ll eventually arrive
At my front door.
He’ll say he’s traveled far.

He’ll play me a song
On his radioactive guitar.

Sherman Alexie
Sherman a Alexie’s Substack Audio
Poetry, fiction, and essays by Sherman a alexie
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Sherman Alexie