Ringing the changes

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Her name was Gertrude Blugerman.
or D-E-A-R-E-S-T on your keypad in
those years, if you were dialing
New York City.

You see, he was the kind to hit
these patterns on the phone’s handset,
the countless universes
of his fiction.

Years later, he was heard to say
of pluck: you will get slapped both ways,
but then some days you will get
laid as well.

(Based on an anecdote I read about Isaac Asimov)

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