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A Quarterly Journal
Jeffrey Woodward, Founder & Owner
Ray Rasmussen, General Editor

Volume 13, Number 2, June 2019

Michael Lester
Los Angeles, California, USA

A World of What-ifs

It is lunchtime. I am reading Anna Karenina on a park bench in the courtyard beneath the old sycamore. I catch a fleeting glimpse of a meter maid passing through. I remind myself I have a reserved parking spot in a nearby lot—I have no cause for concern.

Back at my desk, I am already engrossed in the next project in my overflowing in-basket when the meter maid suddenly appears. I wonder if I forgot to park in my reserved spot this morning!

Not at all shy, the meter maid speaks right up—I saw you reading Anna Karenina in the courtyard at lunchtime. If you are not married or seeing someone, I thought maybe, we could have lunch sometime.

Surprised and flattered, I cannot help but spill the truth—actually, I am married but separated, and I am seeing someone.

a robin
alights upon my window sill
for an instant
despite the mutual attraction
I watch her fly far away



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