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I have three hours a week,
give or take a few years,
to lean back on the stiff
leather recliner
and stare
out the window
at the approaching fall.
It is Florida and the oaks’ leaves
rust only slightly at the corners,
drop to the ground
go through the motions
of autumn, the angled sun
elongating the frail shadows,
the soil that gathers them,
always hungry.
That is one way to
contemplate the passing
of time from this idle state.
Another is to follow
the fluid
from the suspended bag,
swollen as a jellyfish,
labeled neon orange and marked
in black with a date that
you will repeat
like a prayer,
watch them as one might watch
one’s own heartbeat were
it readily visible.
It must be a popular season
for disease, I think,
for all the chairs are occupied,
and I look around
and realize that each of us
has a personal date,
a resignation for waiting,
as if the gift of patience
were bestowed upon us
to bring us here
with only the season
our thin commonality.




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