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by Mary Ann McCarra

transfer, held damply in her

hand, the snow melting

where her cap (nearly)

met her coat, her scarf

left where (behind), shed

like the skin of a snake,

useless as an escape tool,

however jauntily it was wrapped,

the pantone color the blue

of a Mediterranean summer

once seen in a postcard, the

demarcation of blue and

white wavering beneath her eyes

and her feet ache, now, in the

warmth of the bus, the slow

thawing an agony she distracts

herself from by repeating one

line, then the next, as

regular as the telephone

poles she passes, one, then

another, the marking points

of distance, as chatter

rises and falls the bus

creaks in protest, the

recirculation of exhaust, thick

and tarry, makes her


so many miles to go, on her way

to a new habitat