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originally published 2010

 

The man was a truck driver -
like he thought
the wheels could keep him
from rumbling through -
the rock that rolled from
family to frightened family
the dark rimmed glasses
that never shook when he smacked
our cheeks
already turned.

 

That morning
we just obliged
the southern charm of his surprise
moved our hearts with hope
on Christmas morning.
Where did we think he was going?

He just hung there,
our mistletoe corpse
dangling over the living room floor
leaving behind a mess
for us to clean
with brooms
not long enough
to cross state lines.

So women, wives
we never knew
just shuddered.
Their house was not the chosen one -
it was one of his other lives - this living room
where he chose to die.

The words he always said
as he pulled out of the drive
obscured. Our ears could only hear the horn-
as if we were just
full-size sedans in the passing lane.

Comments (4)

This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site

Haunting. Powerful. Well executed. Excellent Poem.

Joshua Hennen
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Thank you for the wonderful comments!

Mishca
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I agree. Well done. I particularly like the the metaphor at the end, very moving. Good poem.

Brandon_Hennen
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"with brooms not long enough to cross state lines." -Exquisite! Who says there is nothing new under the sun?

a
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