My loneliness…still comes over me

sometimes…It’s a liminal, lost

sensation of having wandered wide,

endless boulevards, among rows of

orange trees, winter butterflies,

seasons reversed and out of order,

dogs barking from behind fences

meant to keep out intruders. It’s not

the place that impoverishes me but I

who bring my own sense of poverty,

of loss, to the place. It’s a sense of

near nothingness, as though I were

not as much a blank slate as an erased

chalkboard, still bearing illegible

smudges of smoothed-over writing.

     Marco Roth

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