Placard at the Los Angeles Excavation Site, 5002 A.D.

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These concrete pits at the rear of their dwellings

may have been used for cooking purposes:

charred grates and aluminum cans nearby

are consistent with feasts they called “barbecues.”

The pits were constructed to receive full sun,

which we think they worshipped as a deity.

Patterns of tiles arranged around the edge

may have shown off the possessors’ wealth.

 

Some believe the pits were used for ritual games,

others conjecture for human sacrifice:

their society was known for its violence,

judging by the number of skeletons unearthed

with bullet trauma to the ribs or skull.

Some pits have springboards where we think priests stood.

(Their rulers put innocent people to death.)

The drains at the bottom might have caught blood.

Elise Partridge is the author of Chameleon Hours.

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