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Poetry of Issue #8        Page 55

“A sight, an emotion creates
this wave in
the mind long before it
makes the words to fit in.”

    --Virginia Woolf

When the Hong Kong Flu
  of sixty-eight made another
Pass in seventy, claiming
  my mother due to a lack of
Hospital beds, suddenly
  everything slowed in the house,
In the neighborhood, I
  was kept from danger--my father
Somehow had less time
  to watch me, and so much lay
Empty, infected. There
  may have been shortages but I
Didn’t notice. Yes, and
  community pools, I remember
The one at the Y, was
  closed. One day when my father
Was at work, I promised
  myself I’d only cycle my Red
Royce Union around the
  neighborhood, not stop and talk,
But, instead, I rode all
  over Havertown, all the long roads,
Past shopping centers
  and churches and the golf club,
I sliced through miles
  of air, free as influenza, ascending
Up West Chester Pike past
  places the buses went: past
Manoa and clear out to
  Broomall and back through grief.

  G. E. Schwartz