"...and I am often sad now as if the old manthat I may one day become has secretly walked up behind meto touch me on the shoulder."
6: No More Tears
Sward's Writer's Friendship Series
quick list to poets featured in this issue:
Saying Good-bye To Bob
It was in the paper this morning
that Bob Langstrum died a few days ago.
I hadn't seen him for a few years
after he suddenly dropped out of sight.
The last time I saw him he was crossing
the intersection over at the shopping mall.
He wore a limp like an old tweed jacket,
over a button-down sky blue oxford and khakis
as if he was still smelling the new cut grass
of his prep school's playing fields.
He served as clerk for the vestry at church.
Someone I was talking to about him
just yesterday said that he got along fine
with his wife, they could talk on and on about things
but that he himself had never really hit it off with him
since he had a quick temper with a hair trigger
and when he went to see him in the hospital once
he was as yellow as a crayon from his liver
shutting down. Well, yellow for me is the color of
flowers like the roses out front that just bloomed
and wilted in a day from the heat which brings
to mind all the quickly passing reasons why life is
so worth living with all the things I miss from before
that aren't around anymore, like Bob for instance,
that are probably just going to vanish from the surface
of the earth as if they were never even here to begin with.
So, to come straight to the point, good-bye Bob.
Maybe next time things won't be so hard to say
beyond a simple hi, how are you?
That time of year again, end of October,
and our council of walnuts
lining the driveway
has begun to wear itself out in orange.
Lou's ash trees next door
are a lighter yellow that will
be dazzling against dark clouds
and I am often sad now as if the old man
that I may one day become
has secretly walked up behind me
to touch me on the shoulder.
Last month, I said a final good-bye
to another lost friend.
To hell with death though. It's just leaves
falling in the wind, wet smelling ground rot.
As the rake scrapes concrete and rattles the grass,
I build leaf piles beneath fall's crackling bonfire.