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What you don't know (1998)


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What you don’t know (1998)


Enrapt by Ann,

I was polite,

but never bothered

to know you, dear one.

Five years is a gulf,

and younger brothers

are accessories.

Then, I turned the camera on you,

taking super-8 film.

At fourteen in North Carolina,

you played in the shaded branch,

damming with rocks,

using leaves for boats,

your arms fluttering.

Through an eyepiece,

I suddenly saw

you clearly.

Were you reticent

or naïve?

Ann and I laughed when

we first projected your play,

“That boy must be gay.”

We waited, horrified

when you almost married.

Years later, when you

and Ted, visiting,

watched the film

in our living room,

you wondered aloud,

“How could I not

have known?”

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