Op/Ed

Poetry: Write-in

I’m running for the first time
for First Constable
in my town of Cornwall
 
Vermont. Sue Johnson,
our Town Clerk, tells me
the duties are non-existent,
 
if not minimal. In fact,
she says, the Select Board
doesn’t allow the constable
 
to do anything. No badge-wearing.
No pulling over a speeding
driver. Arresting a dog
 
for not wearing his tag. Not
investigating the rumor
the Town Poet might have
 
stolen a line from his neighbor.
As Frost said, when a reporter
asked him where he found his free
 
spoken lines. To which he retorted,
from a Dragon in Ripton Vermont,
where he lived in the summer.
 
Meaning Stafford Dragon,
his hired man. Who took down
the hay and barreled the apples.
 
Who ran for Town Moderator
and won by one vote.
Which is all I might need,
 
to take me over the top.
If you remember to write
my name in the blank box.
 
An X, if you forget who I am.
Running to not have to do
anything. Never to be called
 
out in the middle of the night.
To shine a light into the trees
and into your eyes.
      — Gary Margolis, Cornwall

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