I smelled Fort Bragg in 1984
this morning in my silver Jeep while dressed
in my un-camouflaged blue suit. I swore
I’d never be a businessman. My best
guess was I’d wear the green beret for life.
And yet, as I drove through the slow school zone,
not half a click from where the only knife
I use sits on my desk, beside my phone,
to keep my fingers free of paper cuts
from envelopes, I swear I caught a whiff
of diesel mingled with that canvas must
that used to make me homesick. It’s as if
some static line is still attached to me
and I can’t make the jump to tear it free.

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