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This poem is taken from PN Review 258, Volume 47 Number 4, March - April 2021.

The Third Wish Maurice Riordan
My last was the Soul’s last draught – the taste almost
     remembered – of the Body’s elixir.  
And so it is – it’s blind chance – I’m outside the canted
     walk-up block on Main St West braced
and maybe kept in place by, on the roof, a giant
     billboard telling me this blue morning  
I’ve come to where the flavor is. Marlboro Country.    
     Not a soul in sight. Signs everywhere.
A Sprite on the table gone flat, on the turntable Blondie’s
     Call Me. Bathwater scuzzy. Cold.
And now in the air shaft Arum dem fayer – next door’s
     pure contralto while she showers.
I break open a Molson X, slide on Nighthawks,
     twirl the channels… hockey, the seal hunt,
Carter’s twitching face, an angry blackclad chorus – kid
     on a metal leg running in a blizzard
...


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