Monday, February 13, 2006

Poem for my Family

came across a photo that brought to mind a little phrase that is part of my family's private vernacular. It prompted me to write a poem. The photo is below, with the poem beneath it.

We Loved Our Chothers
©Christine Olinger

...for my family...

Oh, the roads we've walked together,
tread on scurrying small feet,
gathered memories and pictures
of the summers long and sweet.

Oh, the leaves that spun above us
and our ambling, crunching stamps
with no thought that time was passing
all around we merry tramps.

Merry threats called out in Gaelic,
shrieks of joy in the absurd.
That dear voice is never silent,
echoing in our every word.

Time came, sneaking like a bandit.
Time came, stealing in the night.
We were sleeping while it ransacked
every dream we'd clutched too tight.

When did hours become divided?
Time intruded on our ways,
shredded wonder into segments
til we panicked, counting days.

Now our conversations, stilted
by the weight of daily grinds
mark passages the years,
mark the change in aging minds.

But still, in the flitting moments
of remembered falling leaves,
of meandering, dusty dirt roads,
cotton-candy soiled sleeves,

comes a picture, and a phrase
from our sisters and our brothers
of an intimate vernacular
and how we loved our chothers.

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