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Am I the first for a while to walk
past the end of Poplar Street
past factories, mills, grain elevators
the caves and castles we found
empty lots at midnight gas stations
playing adult with styrofoam cups
when we were teenagers who got it
—we didn’t— do you know who carved
class of 1963 in the diner booth
who took out the Poplar Street sign
on the meditative, musical commute
am I the first for a while to notice the
short tree above coyote's dropping howls
at meadowlarks and swallows
who are the planes above us anyway
tempting us to make like the coyotes
on barstools with superficial catharsis
next to the kitchen, the bread biting back
the interior design out of fashion
juxtaposing penny souvenirs from Vegas
that rest between your bible and mural
neighbors carrying your groceries
in exchange for a smile and thankyou
am I the first for a while to hear
through chainlink fences
the swing sets chime, on top
of spotted sand and wood chips