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On These Acres

May. 15, 2011
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I walk down Holton Street Sunday
    as the sun goes down early,
tender with color in the gravity of mid-November.
Advance Die Casting’s overhead doors
and recessed exits are silent.  From one,
    an illuminated doorbell watches
    the western sky with me –

its wheat-colored beam as sentimental
as the rural late autumn of calendars –
    a cabin, and whitetail bucks
with hooves in a light crust of snow.  
The half-timbered tavern on Richards Street
    is sentimental too. Once thousands
of autoworkers parked across the street.

    Every eight hours, on these acres,
hundreds of ignition keys were turned, wrists
    and wrists revolving clockwise
together.  The tavern windows are crowded
with pimpled aloe plants and cactus;
    and one has a faded cutout
of Arnold Schwarzenegger. It’s decades old,

    from Commando or Terminator, shows
we saw at Northtown; the Budget, or Mill Road,
    which are gone. Everyone loved
hearing Arnold say hasta la vista. We laughed
    because he was oblivious – unblinking
as cycles or laws – when he was sent
    by the losers of the future
    to go back and revise the past.

Sue Blaustein lives in Milwaukee and works as a food safety inspector for the health department.  She's been writing poetry for some twenty years.  Her poems have appeared in various journals including Wisconsin People and Ideas, New Delta Review, Isotope and Verse Wisconsin.  Her work has also appeared online in Blue Fifth Review, where another one of her poems will appear in the summer of 2011.


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