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Stay, I said to the cut flowers.
They bowed their heads lower.
Stay, I said to the spider,
who fled.
Stay, leaf,
It reddened, embarrassed for me and itself.
Stay, I said to my body.
It sat as a dog does, obedient for a moment, soon starting to tremble.
Stay, to the earth, of riverine valley meadows, of fossiled escarpments, of limestone and sandstone.
It looked back with a changing expression, in silence.
Stay, I said to my loves.
Each answered, Always.

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