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I really did love you in a sense, colleagues,

friends and fellow citizens and passersby

of my day here, who stormed the smoking world,

struggling to plant your flags or at least be heard.

I looked at you with consistent and unfeigned

interest, delighted in the revelation

of your pointless variety. It was joy to know

myself a poet among so many who knew

it also, but kept it quiet - the one thing

you did keep quiet. So many males and females

of divers pretentions: fortified handmade heights

from which in rage and fear you each would look

downward at me and melt in love. And I

would melt too and would feel the sympathy

of living with you among the flowers and rocks,

and dream sometimes for long seconds on end

that all any of you wanted was blessèd life

for everyone, and me too. But she and I

clung to each other, comrades, and I understood

that you more truly were the storm, and though

the two of us are dead now, what we had

to do in life, in fact, was to survive you.

What We Had

A. F. Moritz

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