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A Photograph of Shadows and a Side Window

How close it seems, dusty leaves patterning the siding with shadows,
open half-way for air on what must be a summer night,
an eternal return located in its technological reproducibility,
its time repeating, its grasses and the feeling of grass, never simply itself,
but moving forward as walking across it to get to the window
and the rarity of seeing oneself in the glass reflection by chance
and wondering how she got out of the place she's usually in,
the past most frequently, but occasionally a future not too distant
given the common fear of the photograph propped on the bureau
where she and the others served cups from the momentous tablecloth
spread corner to corner at a 40 degree angle to the side of the house
as the day faded in the original of which this is only a copy
calling up what never was in the tonal variations of gray
as the house is only a material copy of house writ large, exposed
as the flesh and bone, coats and jackets of the lived again.

Martha Ronk

Chicago Review

Winter 2013

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