A Cottony Fate, by Jane Hirshfield
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By Jane Hirshfield, from the Summer 2014 issue of The Paris Review. Hirshfield’s most recent book of poems is Come, Thief (Knopf).

Long ago, someone
told me: avoid or.

It troubles the mind
as a held-out piece of meat disturbs a dog.

Now I too am sixty.
There was no other life.

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