downtown La Crosse, circa 2006.

Buying the Tribune
in the morning
in downtown La Crosse,
velvet touch-

A Coffee,
walk the redbrick sidewalk.

Past the Bodega,
and Chairs,
and last night’s Cigarette Butts,

washing dishes in the back of some restaurant.

Faux-Progressive airs;
Talking a lot, stale-
actions and words; NOTICE: they talk a lot.

Burnt-Out Transcendentalists,
watching drunks, and pre-cancer patients and cars being parked—

Save the day.

Wearing shorts under blue skies.

Call clandestine spies, looking up at the corner apartment window-
wondering what’s inside__
… As she wakes,

long legs lie.

Moving, thinking, that fresh brewery smell, now new adult.

In summer heat- beating down,
The Mississippi River on the breeze—cesspool,

I walked back from where I had come
trying to not feel so numb.

Because I had to walk back.

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