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portraits of red and grey #24 by James Morehead

July 3, 2011

portraits of red and grey #24

by James Morehead

a final aeroflot pilot waits to take us home
we exit through customs
our bags packed
black market hats flags caviar
unchanged stone-faced soldiers examine us
one by one
staring through our eyes
marshie is taken aside
his suitcase opened and scattered
his interrogator
pulls out an address book
and slowly turns each page
searching for names
                                  russian names
and writes them down in a small tattered notebook

we watch and wait
as marshie stoops to repack his suitcase
gathers himself his bags
and nervously joins us
a final fiery lift-off and landing
and we hop over the border

helsinki, finland

the flight has released us to freedom
i shiver imagining the soldier behind us
still searching his country
for the names in his notebook


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