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Tortoise relocation.

I'm sorry about this, I thought we could all live together, I didn't realize my utility shack would destroy your environment. I feel terrible, I didn't even know you lived here, that you had been tilling this soil for years and years. I was born in a little grass shack in Pennsylvania. We had to kick everybody out -- a mouse, who wrote me an insulting letter, a flea who did not. I'm tired of those people who go around blaming their arthritis on fire hydrants -- they should be shot through the head. They're pitiful. Turtles are another matter: let them come in last and be glad about that, let them bite us now and then, and be glad about that. They are such a, comparatively speaking, minor part of our lives. They are almost nothing. A speck. I lack an encyclopedia to tell me the inside dope about turtles, I don't even have an inclination to look up turtle in a dictionary, I'm just fond of the creatures. Everyone says they're slow, I'm not so sure, that would depend on your expectations, where you have to be at what time, maybe it works out beautifully for them because they set their sights low, they don't get invitations that require fancy movability. They just want to cross the road occasionally, without plans for dinner conversation or renting a tux, or fidgeting in one's pockets hoping for a receipt that is really worth nothing in the long run.
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Author:Tate, James
Publication:The American Poetry Review
Date:Jul 1, 1993
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