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Monday, July 27, 2015

Long Gone

In the pictures
we seldom smiled.

Stubborn children
forced to pause
and pose before the hearth
in the cabin
in the woods
in the childhood
in the life
he'd built
in the
happy time.

He pulls the tattered box
From under the bed,
studies each fading moment
for clues.

The lamp sheds no new light
On the mystery of us.

The smell of dust,
the screen door’s slam,
the island in the pond
saddles in the shed,
the boat, the chill,
the sweat, the water,
the shadow and the light
the silence of a Sunday
night waiting
while he locked the gate.

Turned the key
On another memory.

The sandbar,
Alligator gar and
Busch beer in a pull-tab can.
Dinosaurs, all gone
like the sound of a horn on a barge,
first large then drifting away.

He puts the pictures back,
Hopes the phone won’t ring,
bringing something new
to grieve.
Lying back, he sighs,
Closes his eyes and waits.