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How It Happened by Chelsea Rathburn

How It Happened

by Chelsea Rathburn

published in New Ohio Review, 2011, republished at Verse Daily

I blame that little village in Spain, the one with the whitewashed houses in a crescent along the sea, a fleet of pastel fishing boats, and that celebrated coffee with brandy.


A sour wedge of apple lurked at the bottom like a tea-leaf fortune.


Because we couldn’t afford the fish we ate pizza with peaches and oregano on the beach, the sun and breeze conspiring.


Seeing us there beneath the cliffs and the postcards of the cliffs, who wouldn’t have predicted luck and beauty? Can I be blamed for loving it all and thinking it was you I loved?




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