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Autumn Interlude; on the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal

Leaving brick and stone we paddled where sycamores leaned over the water. Poplars dropped yellow hearts into our canoe. Ivy and woodbine were red on the bank and red in the water. Cardinals called from tulip trees, crows from an elm branch. Dip of paddle dip and ripple. All else still except for an airplane high overhead. At noon, turning we felt in our faces a wind that shook the birches. Their leaves yellow-blossomed the pickerel weed. In afternoon light canal walls moated a towered city of brick a glass and chrome of shadows on marble repeated upside down under bridges repeated in calmness that lingered into another day.

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