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A novel in verse … and the writing thereof
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Two Dialogues

“So, when are you bringing your

handsome young hero home again?”

my mother asked.

“It’ll be a while,” I said, “if you keep

     calling him that.”

“I don’t know what you mean, Linda.”

No, I thought. I don’t suppose you do.

     That’s the real surprise. I wonder

     how often someone has to say a thing to you

               before you hear it.

“You know he doesn’t like being called a hero.”

“Oh, Linda. I didn’t mean anything

     by it. But listen,

               about the reception. I was thinking

yellow roses on the supper tables, what do you think?

The ballroom at the Stuart Hotel is probably

     big enough, it holds three hundred. And

now the war’s over, you need to

relax. Come stay with us for a week

     before the wedding. Let us get to know

Cory a bit. Or after, if you prefer. You can postpone

     your honeymoon for a few days. Or have it here, in Sacramento,

your home town. Wouldn’t that be sweet?”

“Mother. We need to talk about this.”

“Cory, we’ve got a problem.”

I told him I didn’t want to spend that first night,

     ours, our first

               together

     in that house.

“You mean, you don’t want your little brother

     listening at the door?”

Precisely, I said. And if we waited for my mother to plan

     the wedding, we’d be married in June. “Of nineteen fifty-two.”

“Let’s get married in San Francisco,” he said,

     “where we met.”

That was all right by me.

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