independence

the poem itself
seems smaller now, completed
and alone in space:

groups of metaphors
huddle together for warmth,
glancing down the page

quickly, furtively,
like criminals on parole.
other text is viewed

with dark suspicion,
likewise page-turning fingers
and eyes that will not

understand. each one
becomes a threat. better to
cling closed-fistedly

to one another,
the verse mysterious, dense,
unread but alive.

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