it is only a thin piece of yellow plastic with black letters
but it might as well be the berlin wall
a dividing line between i in my safe warm car
passing by the tragedy of another

encircled by dark clothed police like pall bearers
or crows who sit on the lines above observing

to move past rubbernecking
to prayer
to compassion
to crossing the line
bringing my warmth with me

my own checkpoint charlie
which becomes the opening
for an immovable barrier
crumbling down



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