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Illusion of Progress

After Larry Levis’s “Airplanes”


I grab a torch and go

burn hay bales to a pile,

and stare at the glowing remains

until cloves grow from the ashes.

This never happens.

I turn twenty-seven somewhere,

knees on asphalt, praying

for the field in front of me

to harvest its crop

of three-story colonials.


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