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  • At my former dentist’s office in Albany I saw the Adirondacks in full colors on the wall while my teeth were being polished or repaired.

    Now the half-finished puzzle reminds me of the picture, and the way it fades in my memory, since the main thing I remember is the waterfall and the full colors of the fall, but there are gaps I cannot fill.

    This, in turn, reminds me of the dentist’s office that was located in one of the ancient gates of Freiburg, the town where I spent my undergraduate time. How I trembled going into the office, not out of fear of pain to be inflicted on me, but because it brought me close to a dental hygienist all clad in white and very pretty, sitting right next to me, in touching range yet not approachable in this world.

    By now she probably has married her doctor, because how could he be so dumb? And they inspect each other’s teeth every night, but they still brush their own, in private.
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