In honor of National Poetry Month, I shall be doing my poetry thing each Sunday in April.
Inspired by the poetry of Jim Harrison
I have of recent years fallen in love with older things:
A bicycle lock key in an old business card box.
Bobby Thomson’s Topp card folded and passed from wallet to wallet.
a Cracker Jack whistle carried on my keyring,
prized like an Olympic Gold Medal.
A poetry book on the window sill,
a laminated red maple leaf bookmarking Tennyson’s “Ulysses”.
Outside the sun. The birds chirp their spring songs.
On a bookshelf nearby my mother’s photograph.
I wish I had known my Mama better.
These are but a few of the older things
gathered in the graveyard of my memory,
a place where things go not to die,
exhibits in a Hall of Fame of Older Things.
I make my way through the exhibitions
like some gondolier along Venetian canals.
Here’s a small black rock a college friend gave to me.
She said it was a meteorite come roaring out of the sky.
I loved her. She had other plans
than marriage. It was the call of an explorer’s life.
In a beat-up wooden box somewhere in a closet
I have letters
she wrote me way back when she was in Antarctica.
Then, like some Michael Rockerfeller, lost in the wilds of the Amazon.
When I received the news, I was off to bed for a week.
Her life a piece of parchment shredded into tears.
She was a Cape of Good Hope,
a Shambhala, a nightingale garden.
The sun sets in the West as I stroll
through the Hanging Gardens of Babylon,
my mind wondering if Nebuchadnezzar was happy.
Did he walk through these same gardens and fall in love
with older things?