Today at dVerse Poetics, Meeting the Bar, Bjorn has given us the prompt of “Time Machine” – flashbacks, memories of the past. Come and join us at dVerse. I think you will be pleased with the many poets of such varied talents and styles. And please, add a poem of your own that would meet the prompt!
Cleaning out a corner of the attic.
Pasteboard box sealed with loops and loops of tape.
I know what is in the box but I cut the seal anyway.
I lift out a Japanese lacquered box –
Black with koi swimming across the lid.
I open the box – I breathe deeply –
The scent of him –
The scent of Trumpers sandalwood shaving soap.
I open a large plastic bag and take out the black silk
Hakama and jacket – embroidered – black on black dragons.
I put them back into the box and shove it into the corner
And pile up boxes of books on top.
I close the attic door and go downstairs.
I sit on my back steps,
Warm soft rain misting me.
Sleepy as a child I sit.
Quiet movement – the wild bunnies
Have come out to graze on the bed
of clover I guard carefully
from my husband’s voracious lawn mower –
Only for the night nibblers that fear me not.
I lean my head back against the glass
of the patio door. So tired
but needing to be out in the night.
Soft sweet rain taps on the leaves of the trees.
So very tired. My eyelids droop.
Through the woods, from a passing car
on the distant road I hear…..
one on one I want to play that game tonight.
My eyes close and in my dream I see
a summer day, long ago.
“I like this song. Teach me to dance to it.”
You pull me up from my crouch by the koi pool.
“Teach me….one on one”….you sing the words
with the radio. I smile up at you.
“I lead.” I place my hand on your belly.
Feel you warm through your tee shirt.
“Center of balance….here. Relax your knees.
Up on the balls of your feet.”
I put my arm around your waist, my hand
nestled in the small of your back.
I take your hand and then come in closer,
moving against you, pulling you after me.
quick quick slow. quick quick slow.
You are light and graceful. “Are we fighting
or are we dancing?” I laugh into your chest,
Sometimes my love, it is the same thing.”
One on one I want to play that game tonight….
You bend and laugh softly in my ear.
“Rhumba…you are teaching me the rhumba.
You are a sneaky ballroom dancer girl.”
I pull your hips tight against me
and rotate against you.
You sigh….”you are a cruel ballroom dancer girl.”
The song ends and the radio on our steps
blares out some song we care nothing about.
But later, we dance again, to our own music.
I open my eyes.
Silence now except for the whisper of rain
on the leaves of the trees.
The song is past,
gone down a road of darkness.