Manassas

This is the place where I was born
and the place where my father died
this weekend
three times
twice on Saturday
once on Sunday.

This is the place where men play dress up and become soldiers
in battles that died long before I was even a thought.

The day my mother gave birth to me he was not there.
Right now—smoke from his musket still hangs
in the crisp fall air.

(2005)

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