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From the Ditch

Michael Channing

she wears the same disguise
clean and pressed sensible sunday best
ready with a handshake and a smile
yes ma'am thank you sir
she blends in well and no one knows
her secret face
but me
that deep ditch dirty hidden face
dizzy spinning flower drinking smile
the scabs and the scars
below the mascara and blush
beneath the ashen gray
a girl who chased frogs and threw snakes
walked every fence rail and scattered
every dandelion
a girl who knew the sacred feel
of mud between her toes
the secret language of raindrops
on the roof
in this neutral-colored, fluorescent-lit hell
another from the ditch

From the Ditch

Searching for Kindred Souls

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Chokes and Warbles
Now Available

Chokes and Warbles, a collection of essays and poems by Michael Channing