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Parted

We were young,
patting the upturned earth
around our hopeful oak sapling,
warming it with
hot breath.
I imagined it sprouting, fanning out
overnight to
extraordinary size; but you
just giggled and told
me to be patient.
That one day we'd sit
beneath its shadow together,
humming a secret song.

Today, I returned to
our spot in the weeds.
The sun beat down, glaring
at my single shadow.
Axe in hand, I severed
its mocking spine in two,
working desperately to forget your
piercing, lilting voice-- your
absent footfalls next
to mine.




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