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Elegy for Telephone Wires

Matthew Schultz

When I was old enough to be left home alone

but not yet old enough to enjoy the solitude, I

would call my grandmother on the telephone

and imagine the signal playing along those wires

between us, connecting us like a ship tethered

to its sunken anchor. But I can no longer trace

the journey of my call as it travels into space,

bouncing off satellites and dancing through

the atmosphere as if no one is looking. Now,

our faces appear imprisoned like ghosts conjured

from some interstitial place: liminal, unmoored,

adrift on the eternal sea and facing time itself.

Matthew Schultz teaches creative writing at Vassar College. His recent work appears in Southchild, Warning Lines, and Glitchwords.

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