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Another California Poem 

california makes me nervous and
its not the palm trees or
the eucalyptus or
robert mitchum up at bishop
or mammoth lakes --
or the way a plymouth, a 38, grinds
to the bottom
of the rock strewn canyon
or tears through a guardrail
and falls to the sea --
but it feels like these

like maybe
i need a forty-one caliber pistol tucked in
my waistband.
like a night lit by stars that
turn the break white
or the casual bank of dull green
jets that circle and land and take flight.
   --we've seen the space age fall
to dust.

we dont say
what we see --
we say
what will
not break the spell.
we say oh that's fine and watch the sand flow --
we take a bird down to the beach and let the box go.

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Monte Merrick

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