At Grandma's house, the neighbor kid and I
played cowboys in the yard behind the garden,
shooting each other, taking turns falling
from a little tree to a pile of leaves and
grass cuttings. We'd cry out, drop a gun,
then fall, crumple, and twitch.
We knew our art and took our dying slow.

Grandma caught us at it once.
Awash in the clamor of blooming beans,
she stood beside her garden —
hanging human shapes
of laundry on the line —
and smiled to see that boys, like leaves,
should fall so naturally from trees.

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