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Poem: December Sixteenth


frozen pavement stretching ahead,
snowbound curves and icy ditches,
flashing past my windshield.

my view is constrained by
the power of my headlights;
highbeams, lowbeams, eyes open wide.

there off to the side – shadows dance,
prance from snowy pines to yellow lines…
I brake hard and feel everything slide.

slow-motion time-stop wheels-lock glide
I think of the dishes unwashed in my sink
and the bigger messes I will leave undone…

she doe-eyed and startled stares at me.
she is as immobile as I am inside my car;
this interaction is heading to disaster…

surprising to both of us my car stops.

I swear I can hear her heart beating
just as loud as my own racing blood;
she spins, whirls, and dances away.

breathing deeply the sweet country air,
I realize I have been afraid my entire life
and living as if I could control it;

and the truth is I don’t control anything.
the world just happens without consent or blessing;
just the way it always has and always will.

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