The Railroad: a Manet painting

December 10, 2007
thick bars separate
an infinite Sunday morning
in my periwinkle dress
with mama at my side
the kind of morning where mama says
I needn’t be a lady yet
from the oversized caterpillar
that gobbles up people
through door-shaped mouths,
taking them away two-by-two
aren’t they afraid?
dirty men clink their hammers: “hello”
the machine growls: “who are you?”
holding the fence’s hands,
I blankly repeat its question about me

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