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The back way

Cut the back way to your parents' house,
past the chip shop from your childhood Fridays;
the same faces there, just older
but memory capacities for huge orders are just as pin sharp.
Like the sky tonight,
burnt gold-
it's autumn.
You kick through piles of leaves in streets
that you could walk blindfolded.
Past the back of the old warehouse
and the houses you biked past as a kid.
Past the squat white house with
Crittal windows. Past the
building that spelled out the house number
in pebbles set in concrete
in the front path,
that you somehow always found compelling.
Your heart swells remembering walking up the road with your dad to pick up a Chinese-
pork balls and plain rice for young, beige tastes.
You wish you could put music on
to soundtrack this feeling
but it's dark, and
you're a woman on your own.
You live a handful of streets away now,
a place of your own,
but this way, the back way,
erases years in a golden flash.
The moon tonight is a perfect half

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