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This poem is taken from PN Review 37, Volume 10 Number 5, March - April 1984.

For Eileen on her Birthday Ernest Sandeen

She drives the car but when we park,
she hands me the keys to carry.
Before I can knock out my pipe
she has crossed the paved road
and stands ready like a traffic cop
to signal me a safe moment to join her.
Then she bounds down the concrete steps
as if she's going to hunt something
we can bring home to eat for dinner.

We stand together on the path that will
revolve us around Saint Joseph's lake.
She announces our starting time.
Although her watch is faster than mine,
I say nothing. For a few paces
we exchange banalities about weather
and temperature, and then she is off,

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