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“To Church” by Alicia Plante

A spring day so ripe
tulips in the church gardenhave blown inside outlike cheap red and yellow umbrellas,cherry blossom confettilitters the pavement,and the sky is fullof birds, shadows scrapingzig zags across the lawn.

A silent line of childrenwalk the precise centerof a gravel pathsoftly toe-heeling,careful of kicked rockstheir backs impossibly straightsmall hands claspedbearing insignificant sins.

The girls’ plaid skirts,blue and white for the Virginheld fast against the breezenickels sewn into hemsboys with close-cropped haircutsstand stiff as bronzed soldiers.a nun follows glidingin quiet authority.

At the head of the lineone boy hauls open heavy doorsThe procession is swallowedleaving behind the swirl of springto search for solemn miraclesinside the dim chillof a seasonless church

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