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Under Belvidere Mountain

Uncle Joe Stalin visited Vermont, July of ’34—
same month and year Federico Garcia Lorca was in Eden Mills; Lorca took two days

to sober up from a long rollicking train ride to Montpelier where Stalin
disembarked three days before:

imagine poet and tyrant passed each other in paddle boats
under Belvidere Mountain: each saw

the other’s profile on the decks of lake cottages:
Stalin recovering from
delicate surgery to remove a slug
from his spine: Lorca adrift

in early summer moonshine; a trussed up Stalin
plotted terror under the stars. Lorca

sat in an ocean liner chair swatting
black flies. Then night came on, little wreaths

of death, mosquitoes with their
transparent yellow wings.