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Matthew Smith
Ancient Dogwood

Never compromise or advertise your half-acre plot of paradise.
Just make an oath to share it with someone special.
Streets of gold crack and splinter in the empty degenerate wild.
Faces known and unknown pass by on bicycles made of bliss.
Most of the land was cleared before your arrival.
All that remains is the ancient dogwood, resting peacefully above the earth.
It still blooms in early spring, dies first frost, and then blooms again.
Underneath its limbs we create a world all our own.

Every inch of pleasure peels like bark from the center of her delicate trunk.
Layers upon layers of good will shed to the ground by morning.
Weary old soldiers play chess in front of your self-created downtown market.
One man smokes a Lucky Strike and tells stories about being the first man born in heaven.
Eternity is one single day;
Twenty-four hours refined by the hands of endless imagination and trust.
Utopia exists in the mind.
From the mind, the dogwood blooms.

Matthew Smith received his B.S.S. and M.A. from East Tennessee State University. He teaches Sociology at BSCTC.

 

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