Chain Link Fence

by Robert Boucheron

The little stucco house has a chain link fence
around the back and side yards,
four feet high, with a gate in front,
good for keeping a dog in
or the neighbor children out.
Like a coat of mail, it seems to me,

the fence sags from old age and rust:
it’s not at all the right thing.
Soon after I buy the property,
I drag the doghouse to the curb
for scavengers, as custom says,
and overnight it disappears.

Later, fingers pinched by the gate,
I see that the fence can be dismantled.
A handyman unscrews
aluminum bolts, yanks posts from the ground,
and lays the debris at the curb,
and overnight it disappears.

I blink my eyes in the morning sun.
What else can I get rid of?
A nasty cough, a pile of old books,
songs and reproaches stuck in my head
for many years, this solitude
I wear like a threadbare cloak.

Robert Boucheron is an architect in Charlottesville, Virginia. His academic degrees are B. A. 1974, Harvard University, and M. Arch. 1978, Yale University. His writing appears in Aldus Journal of Translation, Bangalore Review, The Biscuit, The Cossack, Conclave, Construction, Digital Americana, Gravel, Grey Sparrow Journal, JMWW, Lowestoft Chronicle, Milo Review, Montreal Review, New Orleans Review, North Dakota Quarterly, Origami Journal, Poydras Review, The Rusty Nail, Short Fiction, Slippage, Virginia Business.