Poem, “Play it again, Sam”

So, if I get it right
The first time,
I’m not required
By any dusty law
To do it again.

Repetition doesn’t always
Work like fearless
Branches stuttering
In chatty unison
From an aging trunk,

Some curling
Towards the sun,
Others, insecure
In their laziness,
Weighted with memory
Of last April’s
Freezing rain.

They’ve all been
Somewhere before,
Some yearn for the sky,
Others for the
Grumbling earth,
As they did
Last year.

If I repeat the right thing,
I become the surly branch
Scanning the wrinkled trunk,
Defeated by the
Crusty chance of
Being too common
In my frantic mimes,
Just another water-logged
Dog paddling its way
Back with the same
Haggard stick in his mouth
He had twenty minutes ago


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