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It being Wednesday, it’s time to present our third Blogtest Finalist, Michael Gossett! You can check out our first two finalists here and here. Be prepared for our final two sentences to be revealed tomorrow and Friday, and thereafter, be prepared to vote for your favorite!

Condition (2)

Hannibal, MO

My brother’s dead & I just want a guide
to be there

when I get to the cave

a young man or woman hardly matters
which to let me in

take the ticket keep
an eye on the silver counter to click off

me my wife
grandson granddaughter
the rest of the group

strangers
up to the maximum occupancy number

& rope the silver entrance stands

to create an impression
of reassurance by reciting the history of caves

& this cave
Twain marked twine twelve feet
deep in increments

& Injun Joe salt deposits & limestone
all that goes to keep a cave

who’ll never miss an eyelet

misstep or get distracted when walking backward
who knows

exactly when to press the switch who won’t forget

the sound of that one voice

when working their other summer job
labeling rocks & minerals
going into a glass case

the only one who spoke when the rest smiled
have you ever wondered or

would you like to see how dark it is

back where there is no
light when we turn out all the light in the cave

that one that out loud said yes turn it.

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