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On Parting

April 22, 2001|Cate Marvin

Before I go let me thank the man who mugs you,

taking your last paycheck, thank the boss who steals

your tips, thank the women who may break you.

*

I thank the pens that run out on your midsentence,

the flame that singes your hair, the ticket you can't

use because it's torn. Let me thank the stars

*

that remind you the eyes that were stars are now

holes. Let me thank the lake that drowns you, the sun

that makes your face old. And thank the street your car

*

dies in. And thank the brother you find unconscious

with bloody arms, thank the needle that assists in

doing him in-so much a part of you. No thanks

*

to the skin forgetting the hands it welcomed, your

hands refusing to recall what they happened upon.

How blessed is the body you move in-how gone.

*

From "World's Tallest Disaster: Poems" by Cate Marvin (Sarabande Books: 96 pp., $12.95)

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