change

Dessert, desert… whichever one matches

I drove across the mountains,

not for the first time,

but for the first time in a long time. 

As I watched 

the landscape changed 

with the altitude,

then I descended 

back down 

to the other side.

I watched 

as the surroundings 

reverted 

to wilderness;

it seemed both familiar 

and foreign. 

I once haunted 

this half of the state…

reluctantly. 

Now I was coming back,

just for my own entertainment. 

Still, I had to pause 

at a trailer-park

where once lived,

wondering;

“How was it,  I ever sustained myself 

in this miserable little corner 

of the world?”

Children were playing 

where once I worried 

about money, 

paychecks,

bills,

and the day-to-day.

Then I continued

to the hotel I had booked, 

and the concert

that had brought me

east. 

I would go on to have

an awesome night…

but for those kids

(back at the trailer park)

tomorrow 

would just be tomorrow,

but I 

would return 

home. 

How is this 

progress? 

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Changing the unchanged

I am now an old man;
this cannot be argued…
however,
in my mind’s eye,
I am still a young man.
I do not know
when this delusion
will end.
I listen,
with confusion,
to songs,
such as
“Father and Son”,
by Cat Stevens
and I still picture myself,
in that narrative,
as the son.
I fail to recognize
that I have moved,
quite clearly,
into the realm
of the father character.
At some point
we must embrace
this shift, this change.
When?
I am waiting.
My son is waiting.

Beaufort

Some light
housekeeping.
The autumn trees,
willowy and delicate,
showing colors
unique to each,
in row after row:
reds, oranges,
browns and yellows,
quiver and dance
in the light breeze,
revealing,
in flashes,
their colors
and then
hiding.
The puddles
show back
the gray sky
and exult
with every passing car.
Turned leaves
spiral with the wind
and collect in shifts
on grass and curb.
The wind rises up
and batters the house
making sounds
from silent siding
and giving voice
to the stoic structures
while cleaning out
the refuse of summer
with autumn’s broom.

One more leaf

I watched
as one of autumns leaves
tumbled across the road,
it’s golden silhouette
illuminated in the headlights
of an early morning commute. Thousands still
lie matted to the ground,
wet and turning to pulp.
In the trees overhead
millions more shone
in amber,
gold and green…
turning to browns.
We marvel
at autumns turn,
expressing in awe
our thoughts
on this beauty
born of summers death.
We never do this,
though,
in our daily lives.
Most of us shun death.
My neighbor died,
yesterday.
His people came
to say goodbye.
I have lived next to him
for almost a decade
and I could not be moved
to cross the line
between his yard
and mine.
I had known he was sick,
knew it was fatal,
and I never reached out.
He was turning amber,
gold and green
and I never tried
to find the beauty.
I knew, even as it unfolded,
that this was a failure
within me.
But this morning
one leaf tumbles
and in it
I see the loss.