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a word and (a poem)

a word and

my mind travels in bookshops all over the world
searching for the answer
the place for my poetry to find purchase
audience
laughter
and the smell of bookstores
light conversation with cashiers
and their old growling goldens
it’s best with a cup of coffee in hand
browsing the staff selections
the section titles
the points of focus for each demographic being served

here
today
new mexico
writers
how to write
southwest fiction
southwest non-fiction
southwest writers
southwest architecture
native/queer authors

each spine calling out
with color
adjectives
letters of promise
and the comfort of more books than i could read
in a lifetime of reading

my mind keeps filling up
with phrases
images
mountain watercolors
stormy skies asking to be captured
on this day of rest
i can smell love poems
and books on how to draw southwest landscapes
it’s no wonder i don’t want to leave
except to try and tap in
a few letters in sequence
attempting an embrace
of the joy
in
this
place
moment

3-13-23 santa fe

i am the poet of desire by john oakley mcelhenney

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