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The Shortest Route

By John I. Blair

Open land breeds open people.

Here we’ve never had to plan
Our path to B from A.

No mountains rear;
Most streams run thin
And quickly waded through.

Roads tend to stretch
Straight as a string
With but grudged kinks
As the Earth curves.

And I think
This shapes our souls,
Draining the deviousness
From our deeds,
Leaving us bluff and truthful.

But never underestimate
The bloody-minded
Ruthlessness the plains-bred
Kind can bring to bear
When someone does
Get in our way.

©2006 John I. Blair
Originally published in Prairie Poetry November 2007

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