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Perhaps you covet something of
              its emptiness, its uselessness

in matters of  yearning or feeling
              anotherís yearn, that it canít

know a damn thing, yet damns
              everything it touches: the water

it gathers along its passage,
              the air it pushes through,

swallow-like. It is no bird,
              though you envy the song

you hear only after itís gone,
              even if  it sings through paper,

a goat, the neck of a man
              wearing a scarf that tufts just as

the rest of   him flies out of
              his shoes and collapses in dirt.

Or, how it is like the dirt
              receiving him, the privilege

of not knowing if   he was
             kind or unkind, as you

chamber another, waiting for
             someone to come for his shoes.

James Hoch


July / August 2013

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