Nuclear Wake Up

Choked awake into a morning
dusty soot filled my lungs. 
Throat burning, 
Struggled to reach 
a water glass on my bed stand. 
Instead of finding the
smooth touch of a cool, clear cup, 
I scratched my fingertips on cinder blocks 
jaggedly piled beside me. 
My eyes snap open.

The world flooded my perception. 
Crammed space and little slivers of light 
Micro-motel room walls 
collapsed in around me
and there was dust 
still falling onto my bed. 

The wall next to my bed 
crushed the bed stand; 
The wall next to my bed 
tipped precariously. 
The ceiling above me 
tilted unnaturally.

screams from behind me

Pushing rubble-covered sheets off, 
I shook my jeans free of dust. 
I gag from crap in the air, 
then wrestle my old flannel 
to make my way to the door. 
Without thinking 
I yank the door open, 
and saw a terrible new world 
for the first time.

Published by Adam F.C. Fletcher

I'm a speaker and writer who researches, writes and shares about youth, education, and history. Learn more about me at

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