Monday, December 31, 2018

Linda Umans


She had a name, Susan, and a
slit throat—the 70-year-old woman
found dead inside her apartment
on West End Avenue and 95th Street.
There was a 24-hour doorman;
no signs of forced entry.
No L&O episode here.

Other tenants were alarmed.

"It’s a really family-friendly
neighborhood. I’m surprised
this has happened here."

"She was a nice person. She
loved my dog."

"She wasn’t an easy person. She
was like in charge of the gardening.
I helped her. She was very, very,
very adamant that we use certain colors,
like purple and yellow."

"People begged her to stop
scattering seed around for the birds.
'You’re feeding rats, they’d say.'
She wouldn’t stop."

"She pushed her old white bulldog
around in a baby carriage. You
couldn’t miss her. She was like
from a movie.”

And so on. A post-mortem assault,
being mirrored by your neighbors.

Police are searching for a suspect,
possibly another tenant, and
trying to find a motive.
The investigation is ongoing.

Linda reads "Murder":

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Linda confesses: "I was drawn to this case by proximity. I am close in age to the woman who was murdered. I live very near the crime scene. I know the neighborhood and am familiar with the apartment houses on those blocks. And I have some things in common with the woman who was murdered. I also have been known to sound a bit like the quoted neighbors. So...proximity."

LINDA UMANS taught for many years in the public school system of New York City where she lives, studies, writes. Recent publications include poems in Spillway, Composite {Arts Magazine}, DIALOGIST, Carbon Culture Review, The Maine Review, LIGHT - A Journal of Photography and Poetry, Gris-Gris, 2 Bridges Review, and pieces in Mr. Beller's Neighborhood.

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