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Thinking about Temple Grandin

To triumph over tragedy. How odd
to think of either word without a clang
of chaos in your head. As if some god
decides what sub-division you belong

to, up or down. As if there’s up or down
at all. Your tragedy remains. Or else
it never was. Or else to swim/to drown
are synonyms, as each word melts

the other. We can’t know what’s tragic. Nor
can we discern—not yet—what triumph is.
Yet both words thread their silver through your hair.
Their twin ghosts glisten through your cowgirl eyes.

grandin

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