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March 7, 1998

The boat we boarded struck a course across
the painful truth from east to west and back
again, the self-concealing landscape of loss.
My Great Expectations and your heavy pack
carried on like shopping lists of lack,
your past and mine collided through the dross
of things we cared for, conjured up in talk.
And blundering sunlight warmed, cheered and seared
the memories; and the moment like a garden stalk
just broken through the stiff earth cleared
of difficulties hindering – and ghosts we feared –
to stand at the gates of paradise and knock.
The boat we rode on floated back to sea
and we walked home on ground now changed by mystery.

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