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Poem of the Week
I walk in snow this afternoon
across the yard and around
the front of the house, to the bird
feeders on the other side.
I leave tracks in the snow again
today, where I left them
yesterday, and the day before.
And no one will notice them.
They are as common as sin
and much less interesting.
They are the weary wear marks
one leaves on the world, that's all.
It is what we do. We tromp
through this life touching beauty
without ever knowing
how we shape what we love.
Story of the Week
I LIVE ON A STREET called Tall Oaks Drive, but the nearest trees are a half-mile away in the city park. And they aren’t even oaks, but birches—fine in their own right but not at all equal to the stately, majestic oak.
My apartment is on the third floor of an old brick building, behind an outer steel door and three inner security doors with narrow, mesh-lined windows set high. It’s like living in a prison, except it is one of my own choosing.
I like hiding behind doors and locks. I like knowing the world is outside. As my mother would say, “You can’t be too careful these days. You never know who is out to get you.”
There are three floors between my room and the world—a total of six flights to climb and descend each day, four locks to release and re-lock behind me. Sometimes I have to do the whole process an extra time, if I have run out of cigarettes at three in the morning.
It’s a terrible feeling to need to inhale that gray cloud of smoke, to imagine your lungs expanding and contracting, to crave that heady rush as the nicotine barrels through your bloodstream—only to find your last pack empty and crumpled on the kitchen floor.
They say smoking will kill you. It will probably kill me. But since dying isn’t an option, what does it matter how it happens?