Another Kind Of Thanksgiving she gives thanks that he didn't come home last night. her dreams were fine, of feasts and laughter, of days without fear. she helps the girls into their best little dresses and bows. hurries to get them out to grandma's. she forgets her lipstick, but remembers the sweet potatoes in the fridge. hurry hurry, before that key in the door is the song in her head. dead I'll be dead pack up quick, coats, bags, ready. rattle, bang, curse, twist, he's home. questions, accusations, slaps. girls run to their room, new winter coats not as heavy as their hearts. potatoes fly, pans smash against walls, naked lipped woman cries, wonders how it came to this. children hold each other, wondering if holidays are supposed to be so scary. phone ringsringsrings, pale lips drip red now, eyes stare close at pretty white marshmallows smeared on the floor, and she tries to go back to her dreams he can change he will change as he kicks her in the head and she sees christmas stars and god and tries to crawl to her girls room, where they are sitting on the floor with their dolls and wishing mommy and daddy would stopstopstop and be like the TV families they watched last night, with hugs and turkey and love.