Tourists are everywhere.
You would think there’s no one left at home.
They shuffle, stride, drink in with their eyes,
occasionally they suck in their breath or stumble.
A couple slows down to argue whether the canal tour had been a waste, and the walk too long.
Their grandson tries to look elsewhere.
I smile at the woman in the pink window.
She’s wearing glasses and holding a book open on her lap.
1683 says the plaque above.
Who would want history when they can have her story.
A man scrubs and sands last night’s evidence off the red paving stones.

I sit and roll and smoke a little lady finger at the place next door, feeling more civilized than before the finest glass of wine.
I watch the canals of people streaming, bubbling in the evening sun,
with nary a thought of you.


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