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    Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 245

    Categories: Poetry Prompts, Robert Lee Brewer's Poetic Asides Blog, What's New.

    For this week’s prompt, write an antique poem. It could be about or involve physical antiques. Or maybe the poem addresses an antique way of thinking, acting, etc.

    Here’s my attempt at an antique poem:

    “Elegy for the Card Catalog”

    My children don’t know you,
    the tactile sense of searching
    for the perfect book. Fingers
    fumbling for more information,
    each drawer an ice core
    of exploration. An early
    casualty of digital, I wept
    when you left, like a book
    doomed never to return.

    *****

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    Robert Lee Brewer

    Robert Lee Brewer

    Robert Lee Brewer is Senior Content Editor of the Writer’s Digest Writing Community and feels that the 2014 Poet’s Market really is the best edition yet. He’s the author of Solving the World’s Problems (Press 53), because really, poets have the same potential as mathematicians and politicians at figuring things out. He’s married to the poet Tammy Foster Brewer, who helps him keep track of their five little poets. Follow him on Twitter @robertleebrewer.

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    132 Responses to Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 245

    1. veronica_gurlie says:

      bold,
      brassy,
      jazzy,
      old time feeling
      I remember,
      posing like a stiff drink,
      some black slick
      watching me
      and jingling a song,
      with shinny pieces of change,
      in his pocket,

      • veronica_gurlie says:

        TYPO: a period at the end.

        Bold,
        brassy,
        jazzy,
        old time feeling
        I remember,
        posing like a stiff drink,
        some black slick
        watching me
        and jingling a song,
        with shinny pieces of change,
        in his pocket.

        • veronica_gurlie says:

          I recall,
          a bold,
          a brassy,
          a jazzy,
          old time feeling
          posing like a stiff drink,
          some black slick
          watching me,
          jingling a song,
          with shinny pieces of change,
          in his pocket.

          • veronica_gurlie says:

            Wasn’t happen with my meter. So tweak the meter a few times.
            Here we go:

            I recall,
            a bold,
            a brassy,
            a jazzy, old time feeling
            posing like a stiff drink,
            a black slick watching me,
            and jingling a song,
            with shinny pieces of change,
            in his pocket.

    2. Archaics Roadshow

      First of all, I’m amazed that this poem
      was preserved so well for all these years
      in your grandfather’s attic.
      Just look at the details in this piece:
      Right here in the first stanza you have an “o’er”
      followed closely by a “twixt” and an “ere”.

      Then if you look carefully in the second stanza,
      just below the “prithee”, you’ll see, very clearly,
      a “betimes” and a “lackaday”. I don’t think
      I’ve ever seen all three words in one stanza
      in a poem of this vintage.

      And finally, just as he finishes the last two lines,
      the poet ends with a flourish: a “forsooth”,
      a “wherefore” and a “twain”.
      What makes this such a valuable find
      is that the average poem of this era
      may have had two or three archaic words –
      this one has no less than eight.

      The signature is authentic, and as I said,
      it’s in excellent condition. What’s more,
      the craftsmanship is remarkable –
      they just don’t make them like this anymore.
      I think a poem like this could fetch
      upward of ten thousand dollars.
      Thank you for bringing it to us today.

    3. Julieann says:

      Antiquities

      Musty and dusty antique stores
      Conceal treasures, harbor history
      Allowing a view through their doors
      For a glimpse into the past

      Silk and satin dressed Jumeaus
      Once lovingly treasured
      Sit scrunched between old shoes,
      Books, and tourist memorabilia

      Dented pots and pans
      Cozy next to fine English china
      While opera glasses and fancy lacy fans
      Are spread out on the divan

      Elaborate furniture clutters the aisle
      Needing a good dusting
      To show off its design and style
      Along with its expert craftsmanship

      We look at these antiques
      And wonder what society will cherish
      As our “things” barely last a few weeks
      Leaving nothing for the ages

    4. Cin5456 says:

      Old, Interesting, Worthless

      Somewhere in dank and drafty attic
      or a dark infested basement
      is the work of an undiscovered genius,
      an artist, a loner known by none.
      He gave all his leisure hours
      to create a work of artistic genius
      adorned by his unique perspective,
      perhaps from observing men and industry,
      or perhaps his focus was less focused,
      an impressionistic view of love
      or a cubist’s summation of horror.
      This work of genius, weather worn
      before we knew of its existence,
      would shake the world of artists,
      the faith of humanists,
      and the certainty of critics.
      When he passed away his home
      was sold by distant relatives
      who cleared out all his clutter.
      They underestimated the value
      of the work he hid from all,
      and threw it in a cardboard box
      destined for the flea market
      or garage sale, sold for a dime
      or quarter second hand.
      Some antique hunter found it
      in a box among the junk, and thought,
      This is old; it’s worth a look.
      She took it to the Antique Road Show
      where they said the artist is unknown.
      The experts said it’s old
      and interesting, but worthless.
      The treasure of inestimable value
      is back where it began and
      can be found in a box
      in a dank and drafty attic
      or dark infested basement.
      But which one?

    5. PressOn says:

      THE ANTIQUE SERVER

      One touch
      of the old bowl
      connects with olden times
      when the bowl was young, though made with
      old tools.

    6. snuzcook says:

      PENMANSHIP

      One day at the age of ten,
      I defined my universe
      As separate from that of my Grandma.
      She was patiently teaching me
      The beautiful cursive that was
      As much her world as her pressed sheets
      And her tidy kitchen.
      I grumbled at the capital letters
      That had no semblance to
      My beloved printing,
      I tried and succeeded
      With almost all the flowing forms.
      But the final straw was the capital Q,
      Important, for it was part of her name.
      I refused to write my Grandma’s name
      With what looked like a droopy ‘Z,’
      To write it in a way unrecognizable.
      Remembering now, I realize
      The writing was on the wall.
      I always chose my own way,
      The way that made more sense
      In the way I saw the world.
      Still she forgave me,
      And what’s more, accepted me.
      You see, my name was already
      Written in her heart
      In letters that she
      could clearly understand.

    7. My honey calls me this….

      Biddy Biddy Bom Bom
      [after Selena Quintanilla's song Bidi Bidi Bom Bom]
      {triolet}

      She’s no spring chicken
      but the old bird’s all I got.
      She makes my legs weaken.
      She’s no spring chicken.
      She outsmarts me like the dickens
      but I think she’s rather hot.
      She’s no spring chicken
      but the old bird’s all I got.

    8. bjzeimer says:

      haiku

      children go for ride
      huddled in the rumble seat
      with the trunk lid down

    9. annell says:

      Christmas
      Christmas around the corner
      Just out of sight
      Snow covers the ground
      Outside
      The horse and
      Sleigh await
      Make the
      Neighborhood rounds
      Singing carols
      Sip a bit
      Santa’s on his way
      Mom and Day
      Up late
      Sparkly tree
      Pretty presents
      For everyone
      Mama killed a chicken
      Stuffed it with dressing
      Children tucked in bed
      Just a memory
      Of long ago
      Or maybe
      Never

    10. write_0n says:

      how do i post my poem on here?

    11. Antiques

      A ntiques give tribute to the past, reminding us
      N ow is just a moment, many have come before and many will come after.
      T he oil lamp on my cupboard top tells me to be thankful for electricity.
      I look at the black and white pitcher and am grateful for running water. Grandma’s
      Q uilt consists of patches from clothing my husband’s family must have worn. The
      U rn once carried ashes of a grandparent. The gravy boat features cracks
      E mulating wrinkles of aged ancestors who once used it at thanksgiving feasts.
      S o many trinkets left to teach, inspire, enlighten, admonish and memorialize.

    12. writinglife16 says:

      Delilah’s old washing machine

      My grandmother was called,
      G2, by us grandkids.
      She was named Glorajean Grace.
      She absolutely hated her name, but thought
      our name for her was kind of cool.

      Other folks that it was disrespectful, but
      she shook her head and smiled.
      She had an old wringer washer she had
      named Delilah.

      Two things were true about it.
      It gave a great upper body workout and you’d be
      dripping with sweat at the end.

      G2 said it was easier than a scrubbing board.
      We asked her why she named it Delilah.
      She laughed and said it was a beauty.

      Years later, I wondered about it.
      After she died and the headstone was laid
      it read “Glorajean Grace Delilah Willis.”

      The adults were outraged, then they
      saw the original order with that name and G2’s signature.
      They shook their heads, mumbling,
      “Delilah was a temptress.”

      They didn’t get it.
      She had never seen herself
      as Glorajean Grace.
      She was Delilah.

      p.s. Those old wringer washers came to my mind with this prompt.

    13. NoBlock says:

      Roots centuries old
      Father time takes toll
      The bonsai did fold

    14. Cin5456 says:

      Legacy of Perseverance

      Grandma Pearl was one hundred and three
      when she passed away. Born in Oklahoma,
      in 1898, she told stories of her early life.
      She remembered walking behind a wagon
      collecting buffalo chips in her apron
      which her mother used for cook fires.
      It stank to high heaven, she said, but
      a body has to eat, and the prairie has no trees.
      Grandma’s grammar was perfect. She taught
      school since right after she graduated
      high school at fifteen years old. She quit
      when she married my grandfather after
      he punched out the mayor for insulting her.
      Mary Pearl Smoot Vaughan Forrest lived
      in three centuries. She traveled by wagon train
      across the prairies to Texas, and she lived
      long enough to watch men land on the moon.

      Mary Pearl had seven siblings and
      she raised three of her own through
      depression and dust bowl, fighting
      against wind and sand and dry cotton.
      She lived through famine, and floods,
      but she never gave up hope and faith.
      Widowed at forty three, she carried on
      in only way she knew how, doing her best
      every day to raise her children right.

      She taught school and sold vitamins
      and maintained three properties. Mary Pearl
      married again the year I was born, but still
      mowed the lawns of all three properties
      by herself with an old metal push mower
      until she turned ninety two. She was
      the president of her WWI Ladies Auxiliary
      Association for thirty five years and
      attended her last convention in Dallas
      travelling by bus at the age of ninety four.

      When she was ninety six Grandma Pearl
      broke her hip while chinking windows
      against an expected January dust storm.
      At ninety eight she survived surgery
      for a broken wrist but lost her short-term
      memory. Her life would have been longer
      but they said she had breast cancer.
      Someone made the choice to not treat her
      and she passed quietly one year later in 2001.
      If anyone asked who in my life I admired most
      I would say, My Grandma Pearl taught me
      that any hardship in life can be overcome
      with faith, hope, and hard work.

      • PressOn says:

        Stupendous! This too is a wonderfully descriptive poem, and full of love despite being essentially a factual listing of a life. Thanks for posting.

        • Cin5456 says:

          I should have described her antique hands kneading biscuit dough at five a.m. Thank you William. This didn’t turn out as I’d hoped. There is a lot of love seething through my memories of Grandma Pearl. That is what everyone else called her, but to me she was Grandma Mary. I should have taken that approach, and next time I write about her I will do that.

    15. De Jackson says:

      Antiquity

      She feels ancient, cracked
      and scarred as earth, held

      low by gravity’s blow and
      pain’s untimely birth. Seld

      -om and slender are her
      smiles, reined in to dam

      both -age and tears. She
      fears this wasted wand

      -ering heart may never be
      -lieve in its own worth.

      .

    16. write_0n says:

      Tymewriter

      The keys on my body are of the alphabet
      Every stroke of the keys is a letter
      Made into a word
      Written into a paragraph
      Told into a story
      All I need is a ribbon to make into color
      To fall on the paper
      For every coffee break there is a ding
      The ding is a break of a sentence
      Ernest Hemingway once said when touched
      By my keys I make people bleed
      Come a long way in the age-old days
      Of writers, you don’t say

    17. write_0n says:

      Timewriter

      The keys on my body are of the alphabet
      Every stroke of the keys is a letter
      Made into a word
      Written into a paragraph
      Told into a story
      All I need is a ribbon to make into color
      To fall on the paper
      For every coffee break there is a ding
      The ding is a break of a sentence
      Ernest Hemingway once said when touched
      By my keys I make people bleed
      Come a long way in the age-old days
      Of writers, you don’t say

    18. Cin5456 says:

      (Sorry, another rant, this time in antique language.)

      Ageless Questions

      Why dost thou seek the sun and stars?
      Hath thy coffers not enough already
      to feed and clothe the destitute?
      Hath thou not enough to cure the lame and ill?

      Why dost thou seek to own a woman’s mind?
      Hath she not served your fellow man
      for ten thousand years and more?

      Why dost thou ravish Mother Earth?
      Hath she not supported life since
      before the advent of man’s ascent?

      What harm hath these done unto you?
      What crime hath man, woman, and Earth
      committed against thou to seek their end?

      Why dost thou seek to own us all?
      Hath thou not the means to alter water
      into wine, women, and song
      for the rest of your days already?

    19. dford says:

      Transcended

      As I approach the building, the sheer grandeur holds my attention. I can’t help but feel honored in some way to be privy to the institution that has meant so much to so many. The historical and architectural aspects alone are awe-inspiring.

      The rooms cloaked in craftsmanship that may no longer exist as it once was. Men took pride in their skills and left behind a portrayal of ornate artistry. Women brought their own skill-set and took immense delight in its decorum and upkeep.

      When I think of the women that have passed through these doors, the lives they might have lived, and the eras that they gracefully represented, my curiosity unfolds. I find myself a true believer, a believer not only in the integrity of timelessness, but most profoundly, the utter splendor of transcendence.

      Dorothea E. Ford, 2013 (Dedicated to the YWCA members of Johnstown, both past and present)

    20. priyajane says:

      The Ancient Tree

      Some long inhales of centuries
      whisper through its glands
      Rise and fall of dynasties
      and seasons, changing hands
      It has grown with tears, buried in snow
      and nestled threats of wind
      Growing furrows of rusty red -
      doorways, for your wings
      Time has spiraled thro its bark
      and age has breathed in ink
      A reverent symbol of the strong
      that makes my hear, rethink—

    21. Our Clock

      In 1820, our grandfather clock
      was born. Handsome in mahogany,
      the clock still has his original hands,
      and the face of Queen Victoria.
      Over the years, cracks and dents
      have appeared; the clock wears
      down as do we all. For me, the ring
      of that bell on the hour, is a signal
      of stability, and makes our house
      a comfortable home.

    22. Jane Shlensky says:

      Robert, thanks for reminding me of my early love affair with the card catalogue. As a kid, I was a library assistant honored with the upkeep of that lovely old cabinet. There’s something to be said for tactile stimulation in research. Great poem.

      Old Stuff

      They came looking for things they thought to steal
      but finding people home, they stood and talked,
      itching to look in barns, attics, and sheds.

      “I wonder if you have old things to sell,”
      they started, seeing well each farm was poor.
      “What sort of things?” was one foot in the door.

      They offered coins for what they knew worth bucks.
      They saw no harm in such free enterprise,
      convincing little boys to rob their kin.

      So what if family heirlooms were hauled off,
      a piece of history became their ‘find’,
      leaving a family poorer than they’d known,

      bereft of anything they’d called their own.
      I can see Mama narrowing her eyes,
      assessing them from top of heads to toes;

      she had an instinct for locating cheats,
      and she knew antiques fetched more than they’d pay.
      “We don’t have much, but you’ll not prey on us,

      for what we have came honestly, with work.”
      “Yes, yes, of course, we wouldn’t dream…” they’d sing;
      “We wouldn’t cheat you now for anything.”

      “Run on along,” she’d say, as if she shooed
      chickens from her favorite flower beds.
      “You needn’t come again; we’re always home.”

      They’d drop their eyes, knowing she’d seen them plain,
      and sidle slowly to their van, still drawn
      to what they thought we must have tucked away.

      I watched my brother pout counting up change
      he might have earned by selling family things—
      aged dough trays, door knobs, quilts, hand-made and old.

      It would be years before he saw the need
      of valuing what grandparents had made
      with their own hands, when skill was all they had.

      And even now, he says, “I want things new.
      Don’t give me your old junk as if it’s mint.
      It ain’t antique; it’s family worn-out junk.”

      Each child will have his say, each family fed
      by what it values in its heart and head.
      One precious object a forebear held dear
      means more to me he can bear to hear.

      • PressOn says:

        I haven’t much time for checking in now, but I happened to see this and just wanted to remark on it. This is a wonderful story, and the phrase, family worn-out junk,” strikes deeply. Things are not just things when one can envision a forbear using them. Just superb work.

        • Jane Shlensky says:

          Thank you, Bill. I have an old dough tray my great grandfather carved from a tree trunk for his wife to make biscuits. It’s seen a lot of biscuits over the years, but I like to touch where his whittling smoothed the wood. It matters. Cheers, friend.

      • Hannah says:

        This is exceptional Jane, and your comment is so heart warming…yes, it truly does matter. ♥ Beautiful.

      • Julieann says:

        Yes, the sentimental means so much more than the money. Very well constructed and the meaning is loud and clear. Wonderful, absolutely wonderful!

    23. OLDIES-BUT-GOODIES

      Overhead, a struggle of crows.
      Heavy wingbeats, black palpitations above
      gray rooftops. Savvy birds, they know
      it’s too cold for flawless flight. Any airborne
      bird’s auspicious in this weather.
      Down here on sidewalk, I’m pressing east
      up Main with a tiding walk to navigate
      slick ice. I pause in front of the antique shop;
      in its window a cut-glass bowl
      of peppermint to celebrate the season.
      Imagine a sugar-zest to the tongue as fresh
      as this morning, I feel a bit antique
      myself, bundled against whatever
      the weather holds. But I’ve got a date
      with sunrise, surprising yellow ball that just
      now lifts itself slowly in the south;
      almost blinding as it clears the ridgetop
      pines; as if it intuits how I – like
      a small lunar hamster on my daily circuit –
      need its distant warmth, its brightness
      in this season.

    24. PressOn says:

      AN OLD CODA

      Antique Annie fell in love
      with, oh, several dozens of
      the cutest lads you ever saw.
      She ran afoul of the law
      because her age was not a match
      for one and sundry of her catch,
      but Annie never was dismayed
      despite the fines she often paid;
      she used to say, “I speak the truth:
      this is how I keep my youth.”

    25. elishevasmom says:

      Old School

      With bodies hurtling
      through time,
      stuck on auto-pilot,

      blissfully unaware
      of the hurdles strewn
      in their wakes,

      their newly blazed
      trails reduced to ashes
      and smoke,

      choosing to torch
      the trees rather than
      search for the forest,

      our culture’s progeny
      live not on the edge
      but far beyond it.

      Yet the small inner voice
      begs intuition to hoist—
      and in triumph rejoice

      that the guidance they need
      is carried as seed
      deep within.

      “Perhaps you can’t see me,
      but water me with attention,
      and the strength that grows

      will become your lifeline.
      Grasp the knots of adversity.
      They will aid your climb upward.”

      Ellen Evans 12.11.13
      an “antique” poem for PA

    26. Stiffed (Limerick)
      By Madeleine Begun Kane

      A collector was conned by a scam;
      His “antique” poker chips were a sham.
      So he decked the old dealer
      And called him a “stealer.”
      Guess that’s one way to get a grand slam.

      Stiffed Limerick

    27. I’m still working on a new “antique” poem. But here’s one about an old Shepherd-dog from my new book, What the Wind Says:

      PORTRAIT OF OLD DOG
      for Taco

      He’s reached his golden hours,
      lying here on his priceless spine,
      thanks to the best veterinary medicine
      money could buy

      for a hero who’s followed lost footprints
      and found a dozen tennis balls
      gone astray.

      This green fuzzy one, meant for
      back-and-forth courting,
      the sweet young bitch covets
      from between his paws

      as he lies at my feet,
      a lion in his sober golden grayness,
      his vigilant ears.

    28. Misky says:

      An Antique of Indeterminate Value

      I am an antique
      by my own estimation.
      Too frequent to cough
      to clear my dry hesitation.
      My bones are of eggshell,
      and I too easily choke
      on words that flew free off my tongue
      like doves from a perch,
      or rain falling from clouds.
      I trip over dropped syllables,
      trip over unravelling threads
      in messages, trip over thoughts
      as if they were shoes
      a size too large, and my wrinkles
      have wrinkles all of their own.
      I am an antique,
      quite unusual and unique,
      and I’m demanding
      an indeterminate value.

    29. Domino says:

      Steampunk

      What fun (to me) to don the clothes
      of ancient, old, antiquity.
      To put on bloomers, chemise, (best
      wear one under your corset),
      petticoat, blouse, skirt, bustle, vest,
      (waistcoat), jacket, and possibly shawl,
      and, of course, that’s not all!
      Because a proper outfit has a hat,
      and possibly, (probably) more than that:
      an under-bust corset, knapsack, cup of tea,
      life ring (in case you’re lost at sea),
      and every steam-punk will agree,
      goggles, gears, and other debris,
      and all the accouterments you see,
      of whatever character you wish to be…
      An adventurer with laser gun,
      or airship captain on the run,
      a cop with billy-club to stun,
      or just a scientist having fun,
      but when you’re done let me say here,
      with all the layers of clothing and gear,
      you’ve only scratched the bare veneer
      of the wonderful, fun, engaging sphere
      of Steampunk.

    30. barbara_y says:

      Cold and Slow

      An antique hovercraft, the winter morning
      has a hard time leaving the roost. Its limbs
      creak; its creeks are frozen to their banks,
      and when it tries to rise it kicks up steam
      and molting feather clouds. It wants its youth
      back. When it could spread the east with whipped scud
      and hit Hawaii before your coffee’d cooled
      enough to drink. With those days gone to dust
      it might be nice to rest its old patinaed
      hull on a warm still lake, south, where time runs slow.

    31. Silvet Bread Basket

      The only heirloom he wanted, it eluded him for years,
      long after his mother’s death, his father’s relocation
      to a place where others could watch over him,
      on the crisp white cloth on the dining room table
      for every Sunday dinner, lined by a linen napkin,
      holding her homemade rolls. Its story he knew well,
      one of the few possessions carried away on their escape
      from Czarist Russia, given as a wedding gift, cherished
      but put to use the way folks did back then, value
      not in hoarding, saving, but enjoying, displaying.
      As they grew old, though, and as Sunday dinners
      grew less grand, no one thought to ask about the treasure.
      Siblings avoided mentioning it at all to one another,
      lest the others take notice, wanting it more.
      Breaking up housekeeping at last, their children
      sorted through the larger pieces—beds and chests,
      the tall grandfather clock in the hall, Mama’s china,
      Daddy’s books, his Merschaum pipe—doing their best
      to be fair, to be equal. Broaching the topic at last,
      he asked where it might be, and their answers,
      unsatisfactory at best, aloof, turned up nothing,
      aroused his suspicion. He searched the attic, drawers,
      and cabinets, until at last he found it—hiding in plain sight
      behind the cheap florist vases on the linen closet shelf.
      The tarnish served to camouflage its beauty, but its heft
      revealed its worth–solid silver, intricately cut, polished
      clean with hard work, a loving hand, and a soft cloth.

    32. Antique
      the knot
      in the same
      shoulder blade
      every morning
      as you lay on your left side
      my right thumb circling the
      ache again
      smoothing it like feathers
      ruffled
      from too long a flight,
      a down pillow lain on
      for far too long
      the rough of a varnish
      rubbed smooth by too many hands
      over too many years
      thoughtlessly used
      and forgotten
      abandoned
      in a dark corner
      just a little
      care
      making you
      even better
      than new

      • update to make it better -

        Antique
        the knot
        in your back
        as you lay in our bed
        facing away from me
        every morning
        my right thumb circling that
        same ache again and again
        smoothing it like ruffled
        feathers,
        your taut skin the rough of a varnish
        rubbed smooth by too many hands
        over too many years
        thoughtlessly used
        and abandoned
        needing just a little
        care
        to make it all
        even better
        than new

    33. Robert,
      I so miss the old card catalog. I even had a beautiful one in a classroom (and didn’t get to take it with me when I moved)–the apothecary knobs and the heavy oak drawers. I can smell it now.

      Back soon with a poem (as soon as I get through with these darned pesky students and classes.)

    34. I Took a Walk

      with my Walkman
      the other day
      and people stopped to stare.
      I’m sure they loved my fashion,
      my eighties big hair,
      the tube socks with the red stripes on top,
      the short shorts that went up to there!
      The tube top around, well you know where,
      and I had a sweat band around my wrist and through my hair
      and I bounced to the music as I walked on air.

      When I got home
      I threw an eight-track in
      and danced to some music
      while fixing a gin
      and tonic in a Tom Collins glass
      wondering where Tom Collins was today
      and if he still talks about people in that special way.

      Tomorrow, I will try to telegraph a friend.

      (References: Eighties technology, the Tom Collins Hoax of 1874 and the Telegraph Machine.)

    35. SHE’S OLD, BUT SHE’S STURDY

      By the window she waits,
      patient – crocheting pieces
      for future projects; busy work
      while she waits. She debates

      whether to head for bed,
      or keep watch as every swatch
      of yarn falls neatly, completely
      finished for an afghan perhaps.

      She trims the candle – long wicks
      burn wildly, and she is mildly cautious.
      He is off for a quick jaunt, once around
      the world and on until morning.

      She needs no warning; she knows,
      she always knows when it snows -
      a “blizzardous halacion”; her station
      will keep her posted, toes toasted and warm

      and no harm will come to those who dream.
      Visions dance gently as the children mentally
      prepare for the morning’s arrival.
      It is a matter of her Christmas survival.

      Her senses tingle, she hears a faint jingle,
      a hand reaches to touch the brooch
      he had brought her, the first gift of many
      Christmases past. It last belonged to his mother.

      No other woman could wear what every Claus did bear
      for his one true love. High above she sees a flash
      and her “antique” is home at last to give a tender pause.
      Such is life for the “old folk” – Santa and Mrs. Claus.

    36. Antique

      I don’t know when I became
      a collector’s item, the hard
      lines on my face brittle like
      bones and my real ones
      weak enough to break on a stair.
      My grandchildren spend weekends
      pouring over old photo-albums,
      fingering snapshots of my salt-slicked
      legs at a beach, my bathing suit
      now yellow with age. They think
      these pictures are the relics — the
      touchstones of a time when I
      could outrun my boys or
      steal glances from the girls’
      beaus. But the truth is in the mirror —
      Sunday mornings before the kids
      tumble blithely down the stairs to greet
      me in my apron and bun, or later
      when they help me pick my way
      across the garden, knuckling
      the crook of my arm so hard
      it will bruise — the only antique
      in my house these days is me.

    37. Awe

      To hold something old
      and feel the stories contained
      within every line and groove,
      pausing …
      to imagine where it’s been,
      what has been seen…
      and cherishing every piece
      for the treasure and the pleasure
      found within each gaze.

    38. De Jackson says:

      LoveloveLOVE your poem today, Robert. :)

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