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With no shoulder to ride on we walked
our bikes across Vicksburg Bridge.
As trucks blasted past us hauling their freights,
we clung to the right of the solid white line.
Whatever you do, I reminded myself,
stay focused on the solid white line.
Steadily, we made our way like needles
stitching a fabric’s seam. Eventually
I couldn’t resist, couldn’t stem the urge
to turn my head, glance over steel trusses
at the river below. Memory swelled, its muddy swirl
lapped my mind: every St. Louis summer
I’d hear of someone who went for a swim,
ignored warnings, dove right in,
(glancing, I felt a passing rig),
the body later washing on shore.
That’s the danger of undertow
also the thrill.
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