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Train waiting

Stopped by freight on Grand River downtown, familiar names interspersed with rail lines I've never seen. Corinth and Counce Railroad Co. Milwaukee: America's resourceful road. I wonder what that means, remembering a resourceful U-turn on Farm Lane when boxcars stopped, blocking the road. Hungry, we sped into the easing darkness toward ice cream and hot sweet melting before good night. Residual sand from recent construction smears the blacktop across from Ramon's Restaurant. I taste chicken flautas, guacamole soft against the roof of my mouth, green like stars reflected in a lake. A tight-haired woman scowls, her red Cadillac swelling against the white line. I grin but she looks away, I guess she's not allowed to talk to strangers, smile through windows sealed to conserve an artificial breeze. I dangle my left arm against the car door drumming softly without rhythm. Facing west, I extract cheap sunglasses one-handed from my purse glance again at my companion, her nose parched like newspaper left too long in the sun. Radio rasping, three songs end before the train passes. Arms rise slowly affectionately, as if releasing a toddler to trot over the driveway After an orange rubber ball. I gun quickly, turn toward the airport. Sand pulls at my tires leaving weak tracks quickly smeared by a bicyclist exercising a grey dog. Amalia Gladhart

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