October 27, 2012

poem 402 of a poem a day for 2012


Photo by Jim Nicholson ©

when my curiosity out ran me, life slowed down

from the time
I remember
I have always
wanted to know
I always
had to know
what was beyond
the dust and the fences
the herded horses
and the cattle
everyone grew
their own vegetables
and you developed
your skill set to fit in
working close
to where the elements
met your electrical
needs inside your bones

one day
on the day
I got my name
I was born again
on that day
I was given
emergency ankle surgery
and became who I am
you see
they did not want me
to keep running away
to keep looking for answers

I kept hearing
questions in my head
songs of a handbill
in constant unfinished written
the characters remained the same
but the actors always changed
the patterns rang bells
paused me leaning constantly
in squint filled warm afternoons
these questions
always said
look for answers
where no one
wants them to be

my name is
Hobble Jones, he said
as he paused for a moment
to lean into his spirits
before saying
he has been at this
corner piece of forgotten
for a long time now
that he traces memory now
in the smell of ashes
and the curve tides
of sand and wind
and the directional lace
calendars in the clouds

Hobble said
when he was a young man
he asked the keepers
of the depot
when the next train was coming
what was beyond this
what was there
and every time
they would look at him
and speak in a language
of half smiles and eyes and say
look within and bother yourself
no more with the arrows of time
that fly from your eyes
those birds, your legs
will never be able to catch
their points of woven returns
are your dreams now
that ask what is beyond this
what have we come to know
in our four walls and
the leather books
pressed into our skin
at the near edges
of the desert
closing in

the stories
Hobble says
will all be
in the creases
of our expressions
and the pauses
of our words
so eventually
everyone of you
just like the keepers
told me too
will tell the story
of just how we came
to store migratory parts
of humanity here
just in case
we hear
that train
a-coming again

EJR ©

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