Thursday, November 19, 2009

Poem: Home

This is a poem I wrote while working at the junior high school I had the privilege to be a part of for seven years. It even got published in our school district's poetry anthology, and I was asked to read it at the celebration event. Of course, I blushed and mumbled my way through it, and every picture shows me practically curled up into my paper, but hey-- at least I did it, right? I have this ongoing pledge to myself that one day, someday, eventually, I will stand up and read my poetry at one of those "open to the public" poetry slams they have here in town. So far, no dice. Maybe next year, at Burning Man, will be the right time... who knows? Til then, it'll have to stay on paper and on this blog.

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each day, as i cross campus,
the seagulls cry plaintively
and whirl overhead
they bring the scent of the ocean with them
and memories of water
glinting on the white-crested waves
from other, brighter times…

they are far from home
like me, like you
like so many of our students
yet they gather here for comfort,
circle and dive and float on the winter breeze
waiting for the absent tide to roll in...
       and who’s to say otherwise?
       who will break the news
       that we live in a cemented valley
       of sidewalks and malls
       with nary a coastline to
       delight the lonesome eye…

perhaps they have it right
to soar, and hear the rhythmic tide
to see the ocean in our football field
to dive for fish near the gopher holes
to chatter with friends about the mysterious sea
and dream of a place they’ve never even seen…
       perhaps they are the wise ones
       to see beyond the hole in the fence
       to a world of beaches and dunes
       to cry a song of longing and hope
       with an echo that cuts through
       this despair, so darkly familiar…

and so each day, as i cross campus
their cries overhead are a beckoning
to remember that we began
in a grand, amazing, ocean of dreams
and can find home again,
or for the first time
we, the lost children of atlantis

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