Stumpy and the Decision Tree        by Thorold May
                   page thirty-one
That should have been a brilliant move,
Instant magic from an arcade king. 
They held their breath, but not too long --
Impassive blue was all it spoke, a quiet rebuke.
Yah! Abracadabra hullaballoo, witchery's way away
Gurgled Megan O'Brien, shaking with giggles.
As you command, he winked, why not?

With a clatter of keys it was done.
A pause, a shrug, well what the hell;
Another strike? Stumpy, what's your call?
But wait! A trickle of light pricked the screen,
A thin white line meandered around the glass,
And burped, blinked, flickered out again.
Sleepers wake … breathed Meg, her voice trailed off.

.. to be continued

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"Stumpy and the Decision Tree" copyrighted to Thorold May 2002; all rights reserved