If I could bring back one thing from Chautauqua
it would be my neighbors
It is so nice to be someplace where people invite you onto their porch,
take an interest in your day,
the community, the world.

Where people keep a close eye on the children,
know them by name,
mark their growth with pictures and notches on posts

So nice to live where people don’t walk around with their fingers all pointed

their noses all bent
their eyes all scrunched into worried little sores.

Brittle people
with nothing better to do then
then shine their own buttons.

If I could bring back one thing from Chautauqua it would be my neighbors
and their soft swooping arms
ready to catch, and then, no matter how hard
release us into our lives.
No judgement.
No scorn.

The place we stay on Waugh Street – The Assembly Building 1887

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