in the left hand corner of this slab
there is room for both name and return
Though I know in these enduring broken bones
that spines are sometimes broken,
even eaten on my shelves
by insects hungry for glue—
though acid fast paper disintegrates
in three hundred years or less
and references to common place objects
of an assumed lifespan
will need foot-noting by experts
before this century ends,
I still check the mail each day
and fold these sheets once more
wherever the creases fall
to readdress myself
in an internal cursive
for ultimate acceptance.

Maxine Cassin
from her book Turnip’s Blood
The Sisters Grim Press, 1985

Used with permission of the poet’s estate.

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