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With the Seldom Help

Jake, with the seldom help

of a neighbor or two,

built their one-room adobe

over the course of two years.

He suffers from PTSD

and lives off SSI benefits.

His wife, Violet, receives


a slim Social Security pension

from forty years' work

as a nurse’s aide in Del Rio.

After his military service,

Jake, although a jack-of-all-

trades, never held a steady job

but clandestinely, so as not


to lose his SSI benefits,

did odd jobs as his mental state

allowed.  Violet grew up

near Terlingua; Jake, at the edge

of Del Rio where he lived

all his life before settling

with Violet in Terlingua.


For two years now,

they’ve started their day

with coffee at their small,

Mexican table in the adobe.

As they sip, Mexico looms

just to the south of them

like a mute, staring stranger.

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Larry D. Thomas

Jake & Violet

(Terlingua, Far West Texas)

an rhp electronic chapbook





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