Read My Palm
A small town appears,
of soybeans and corn
in the blazing sun.
Your cat leads you here
on a night with no moon.
You show her
your smallest key.
You have enemies
draped in steel,
but they will drown
in the coming flood.
No one greets you,
no carts or pickup trucks.
All you see
is a pile of clothes
folded on a concrete bench.
Salmon leap into your boat
by the silver falls.
The quiet cat licks her golden fur.
The Country of His Birth
Wooded hills coming into view.
Big gorge, too wide, so many
boulders, a frightening place of skulls.
Slowly you pick through the bones.
You and your dog alone here on this
high place, waiting for the mist to clear.
You open your coat to the cold air.
The dog slips her leash, scrambles
down toward the rocks and cave.
You call her name, but she’s caught
the scent. Her motion pulls you along.
Now the sun burns in the sky.
Everything looks blue, then red and gold.
You hold a mirror to your face:
your father stares back from the country of his birth.
Phone rings, and you’re in an alley
behind the dumpling place,
walking back and forth as you strain to hear.
Someone has a message for you,
but you can’t be sure if it’s real or a robocall.
A woman’s voice, maybe with an Irish lilt,
or maybe she’s half singing now,
and dogs sniffing at the dumpster
have been whining for a while.
You might have known her long ago,
in some other country where she drove you
for hours around a strange town.
Now you know where all the stores sit
on their grey haunches - butcher
and bakery, fruit store and the place
that sells toy castles and painted knights.
Or maybe she is just a voice requesting
what she needs from everyone, a set of numbers,
a commitment from you to raise your wounded palms.
Steve Klepetar lives in the Shire (Berkshire County, in Massachusetts, that is). His work has appeared widely and has received several nominations for Best of the Net and the Pushcart Prize. He is the author of fourteen poetry collections, including Family Reunion and The Li Bo Poems.
SteveKlepetar is waiting out the winter and the pandemic in Berkshire County, Massachusetts.
Congaratulations Steve on your work. I enjoyed reading about realiries instead of just high-sounding stuff that makes little sense if any!ReplyDelete