We used to read about it in school
textbooks: land of milk and honey, land 

of emerald, close-clipped grass and golf 
courses where, on weekends, men practiced 

their swing and women huddled together 
in their living rooms having Tupperware 

parties as the charming family dog--- 
beagle, terrier, poodle--- sat up and begged 

for treats. Meanwhile, grandmother dished up 
rice for breakfast topped with boiled squash---
mashed with a fork, she said, it looks like egg.
From reading Nancy Drew novels, I learned

the word roadster; I thought sleuth was a career
for which one had to dress in three-fourth sleeve 

cardigans and sheath skirts. Decades later, 
in the land of the everlasting 30-year mortgage 

and the terrifying health insurance co-pay, I order
breakfast at a diner and wind up with the sunny side-up 

double yolk. We pinch every penny and it's only just enough
to keep us afloat, out of the red. How do others do it

as if it were as easy as breathing, as if trees were
leafed with crisp green, as if everything were only money?


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