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This patch of ground,

all rocks and wildflowers in those years
when grass grew green
on hills untouched by dynamite or dozers,

holds ghosts and dreams
and the sweat of generations.

Here where everything is connected
with an innate respect

we stand toe to toe,
stormy-eyed with distance
that seems impossible to span

until the traffic from the highway intrudes
into our space             and we remember
that we’ve already lost too much.