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Return to the Old Town

October 7, 2010

by Rob Mackenzie

To live with more than recall
of a latent happiness

that almost drove me
twelve years ago
to a drab hill town

and a woman who smiled at strangers
as they passed her window
never smiling back

I renounced contingency
and hiked the high track.

The people gathered in the square
to celebrate the slow roasting
of a single fish.

I matched its stare and felt certain
we had met before in better days.

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Rob A. Mackenzie lives and works in Edinburgh. His first full collection, The Opposite of Cabbage, was published by Salt in 2009. He blogs at Surroundings, and is an associate editor with Magma.

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