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By John I. Blair

Yesterday in my greening garden
I pruned back roses, piled up leaves,
And planned what I ought to do this year
To shape my shaggy flowerbeds.

But while I was scraping mud away
From the half-hid path of orange bricks
That meanders through the garden’s tangles
And explores its angles, my thoughts slid.

This, I said, is my garden walk.
(I talk to myself while gardening.)
It’s laid of old bricks that I picked up
Beside the railroad track downtown.

Long ago they were molded in Mexico,
Then salvaged, shipped here in a railroad car,
Carelessly spilled onto the ground,
Found by me and hauled on home.

When they were new these Mexican bricks
May have been used to build a church,
A school, library or hospital;
Now all I can show is a rough-paved path.

But the bricks evidently do not care;
They know they’ll glow in the sunlight here
Just as well as in Saltillo,
Coahuila, Puebla, Mazatlán.

©2003 John I. Blair

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