from San Andrean Two
by John Peck

   Diagnosing heart failure in the professional thief locked up with him,
        diagnosing his own cancer in the last exam on his Boards,
             reading the inflamed faces around his car
   near the Toddle House Diner, a waitress-Athene pointing him out—

the celebrated pointing him out at his funeral, but no one could say then:
               Already you have done your work,
                your stethoscope
took a full reading, you raised something in us that had died, and so
     the powers said, There goes another Asklepios, call him back.

Flashlights in your face next to a black girl in that car, and light
     fixing you where the Fault shuddered with dislodgements into
                the next reading of rest.
                I am happy to be back in Meridian.
We are very happy to have sat at your table. I never thought
                I would lose interest in politics—

the shield mother sent you in, and the wheat mother took you back,
     and it is all right, you may lose interest in us too
               and we shall not mind.
You walked from the tunnel, you knew where you were, and showed us.
    My legs were shaking, but I managed to drive through the crowd.…


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