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A Poem: For Irene, or Things to Remember 

Dear Irene,
There is a lesson to be learned in the backward motion of tires through water
in the criss-cross of reflections through an unannounced eye
through the tearing of gravel upon flesh, upon the soft and tender mind

I know that your temper is scattered as shards of a self
an identity blown apart by the loss of icons and heroes
of the heroes we imagine in our Selves, when young
when water smelled like summer and rust smelled like Christmas

I know that your second cup of coffee is a sugar coating for the blood
of any given morning
the barrier between a penny and a pickax
between the sun and the ground

Don’t forget there is a garden waiting for you a long way off
that there is a fig tree that needs pruning and a broke-down outhouse
needs transforming into a terraced planter
Don’t forget to drink plenty of water
and don’t forget to love, despite yourself
to believe that you will find a man who will love you the way he does
and to love yourself, despite them both
—Me

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