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Contributor: Rick Hartwell

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Rudely awakened at dawn,
Teasing another day from life
Continuing to brood like some
Antique oak draped over
A field of wild mustard.

Half-forgotten memories ebb
Withdrawing near the end of season
Late spring days freshen into summer
Still filled with unmet expectations.

Down-slope nearer the stream
Lithe limbs of slender white birches
Framed in the back-door window
Slowly wave at the retreat of winter.

Tender leaf nodes sprout like
Buds of young girls announcing an ache
Of too-fast-approaching womanhood
I continue circling round trying to trap
Forgotten facts of a fragile life.

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Rick Hartwell is a retired middle school (remember, the hormonally-challenged?) English teacher living in Moreno Valley, California. He believes in the succinct, that the small becomes large; and, like the Transcendentalists and William Blake, that the instant contains eternity.


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