God pulled into the parking lot of a Walmart
in his Burnt Sienna 1978 Buick Lesabre.
He stepped out into the cloud filled gloom,

it was about to rain.

He scanned the horizon and saw
the grey sameness that enveloped the world,
the bare trees, and the broken streetlamps.
The abandoned hulks of metal
left glassless from the blast and frozen.
The time capsule no one meant to create.

There was nothing left of free will
but skeletons framed in empty windows,

A study of life as it once was.

There must be something left of humanity
hiding in the pockets of caves,
barricaded into the basements of buildings.
Eventually they would venture out.

He would find them.

Until then, he stalked concrete and asphalt.
He searched the shells hoping to find life
hunkered down in the backseat of a Chevrolet.

He searched the electronics department and the canned food aisle.
He checked in dressing rooms and in the back
between the mazes of boxes. He opened each one.
Sorted through the left over and left behind:
Found green beans, shampoo, wrenches, and batteries.
Toothbrushes, magazines, and flashlights.
He looked behind bookcases and under couches.
He scoured every corner until he fell down exhausted
on a bed built for two.

He woke when daytime fled.

He rose and walked though what was left of the doors.
Out into the dull night and its shadowy despair.

There was nothing here.

He stopped.

Picked the dandelion that grew in the crack
next to the collection of shopping carts.
Breathed in forgotten yesterdays
and a succession of empty tomorrows.

He set the flower on the dashboard,
put the key in the ignition,
and drove off into the relentless darkness.


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