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When the Berlin Wall Fell
by Mary Langer Thompson

I watched it from my couch with my German father,
called "The Little Dresdener" as a child.
He was close to his eighty-seventh Christmas
and the wall's demise came too late for him
to reunite a divided family.

No wonder he was sensitive to barriers.
He chose America; they, the heart of Europe
where firestorms would consume the Fatherland.
How do you envision bombs falling on your mother,
then separation with a concrete barricade?

It's the twenty-fifth anniversary of that night together.
Alone, I watch the street party at the Brandenburg Gate.
A lighted wall of balloons will soon be released,
as though it were all child's play.

So they go, snaking their way.

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