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Pieces in the River

by Greg Grant

Daily, the news reports got more grisly-
Here an arm, there an arm,
Everywhere an arm, arm.
Shots of firemen in aluminum outboards
Looking for more pieces in the river;

Shots of the rumpled and redeyed coroner
Standing on front of a dozen numbered microphones:
"We won't know who she is," he says,
"Until we find more pieces in the river."

Shots of the reporter standing with her back
To the boats wafting by on the lazy Ohio,
Saying meanwhile the search continues
For the unknown killer
Who cut her up with a chainsaw
And threw the pieces in the river.

We were shocked to find out she was from here.
They showed a fuzzy Polaroid on the news.
They ran a big story on the front page
Of both the Morning Journal and the Evening Review
Describing how long she'd been missing
And what they could piece together of her life
Before she wound up pieces in the river.

They called the Methodist minister,
And he did the funeral closed-casket
And tried to persuade them that the woman they knew
Was more than pieces in the river,
But being only one of the King's men,
He could not put the pieces together again.

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