Little Elise refused to sing in the apartment.
She used to think her songs made angels smile;
that was before the neighbor
told her she sounded like a toad.
Her parents coax her to sing again,
explain what matters
is the intention in her heart.
In the dark alley,
the mugger holds the knife to Anna’s throat.
She’s given him cash,
but he wants more.
A shrill sound escapes one of the windows.
The startled assailant runs,
and Anna says a silent thank you
to her singing angel who sounds like a dying rat.