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Across the aisle

My aisle’s a walk across the road I have
to walk. My neighbor’s stripping his bumper-
peeling decal off. We’ve had little to say
 
to each other these past twelve months.
Guessing where each other stands,
by the flags we wave. By now we’ve had
 
enough of this, our barely talking.
We have to get back to the work of
neighboring. Our poet on the mountain
 
is likely to have said. Bynoonsomething
written on the frost is gone. Who won,
who lost. Every four years we come this.
 
and cross the road again. Not looking
for a hand-out or ways to spend 
what we don’t have. Not wanting
 
to fuel another war in our deer-hunting,
book-reading neighborhood.
Thanksgiving’s a few weeks away.
 
So we can wave the way
we’ve usually done. Not have to care
what a bumper sticker said. Say if that deer
 
has enough points or any points at all,
to be taken down. If one of us is here
to let it run away, back into its winning woods.
Gary Margolis
Cornwall

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