Blackbirdan online journal of literature and the artsSpring 2011 v10n1
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Elegy as a Shopping List

A spider never celebrates
straight, working each day,

turning a sticky stern into orbs,
its body bulbous with

heat. For Sale signs on lawns,
shadows of people inside,

briefly rising, but sinking once
we pass by.

Summer has wounded
the empty beef jerky bag,

erased half of someone’s list near
the gutter, what’s left:

brown, umber, cottage . . . 

The mystery is how the list
seems placed with such care,

as one might prop a batch of
lilacs wrapped

in brown paper against
a tombstone.  end

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