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Village Post Office

Honorable Mention – 2021 Poetry Contest

There’s a truck double-parked in the only parking spot.
The guy at the counter owns a construction business,

is telling the clerk all the things he’s built. “That bank in Eau
Claire? I built that one, too. …” After a few more buildings

he leaves. I’m the only customer now. The clerk knows me,
we trade personal gossip, she shuffles through my mail.

It’s sacred, and made of the things we know won’t last:
bits of paper, news, postage. They go away from here,

arrive by some strange alchemy where we want them.
Nothing else quite works like this. Shopping was fine.

Two people in town told me more snow was coming:
“Everyone in town says more snow is coming.”

It’s been a bad winter for old buildings and snow.
The annex of our barn fell under the snow.

The firehouse roof fell under the snow. They had
to put the trucks in the school parking lot.

We agree it’s not the snow, it’s the other drivers.
She tells me to stay warm, drive safely.

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Melaney Poli is an artist, writer, and Episcopalian nun. She is the author of the accidental book of poetry You Teach Me Light: Slightly Dangerous Poems and an accidental novel, Playing a Part, both from Wipf & Stock.

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Phone: 608.733.6633


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