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--- V E N I S E   N .  B A T T L E


I am in St. Paul in a blue house with boarded windows.  My father's mustard work 
boots pace the floor.  He speaks but I can't hear him.  Iím busy reconstructing 
motherís living room and kitchen.  Two glass tables, an angel figurine, yellow 
flames on a gas stove, suds in the sink.  We are clean people.  I walk out the 
back door, nudge past pimps and drug dealers.  Three teenage girls kick bottles 
and litter the street.  Ponytails, hoop earrings, green plastic bangles and tight 
designer jeans say theyíre old enough to matter but too young to care.   In this 
dream, I can fly, so I do and my foot lands on a ratís tail in a hallway in my house.  
My father is still talking.  "Keep this place a secret.  Itís your property, too.  You 
can sweep and settle here."
 

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