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And then you’ll see the same old household:
hanging plants, dark bookshelves,
the window still half-open,
stream of autumn air,
suspended in the room,
his pen, forgotten on the floor,
three quiet paintings on the walls
(curious, cold onlookers).
The light fare of common life
in this corner of the Universe:
the dust, its tiny stars dancing in the late light,
small insects, cat’s world,
with its own milestones,
with all those corners, smells
and hidden little sinister treasures.

The solid prewar hardwood.
The whole cocoon of another futile try.
There is no point in looking further.
They were just there.
He, by the fireplace,
always struggling with something.
This time his pipe.
She, coming down the stairs
with a letter in her light eternal hand.

New Orleans Review, 3/25/04

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