Carl Miller poems
page 94


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Another Spring

“I want to live to see another spring.”
Pale eyes clouded with cataracts,
translucent to another world,
an old woman’s trembling voice,
the memory surfaces like a whale.

I’m walking up the trail to fetch
a five gallon propane tank.
Sometime in the next couple of days,
either my son or I will have to change it.
It could be dark or cold or raining then.

This morning, it almost feels like spring.
The roaring creek pummels silence.
A single bird sings his presence.
I’m wondering if I’ll need to start a fire.

I think she was my grandma’s neighbor,
living in an old Ohio farmhouse.
What I remember is this one desire.

I’m getting old myself. My beard is white.
I find myself wandering my garden,
from pink apple blossoms to red azaleas,
beauty that I’m still alive to see.

Second Street

I parked the car on Second Street.
You got out and walked to me.

We looked at each other and kissed,
you, a sixty year old woman,
and I, a sixty five year old man,
like a pair of reckless teenagers,
till the sound of an approaching car
moved us back to the sidewalk.

You had me stand on the curb,
then a step, then two steps,
to experience our kiss as if
I was the taller person here.

This wasn’t anything new to me.
I’ve had girlfriends this much or even
this much shorter than I am.
For you, a strange tilt of your neck.

I don’t know how it is that after
twenty two years of knowing you,
we’re experimenting with
how our bodies fit together.

Arcata After Midnight

A television talks, plays music, and sings from the next room.
Through a balcony door veiled by a lace curtain,
a dog barks, whines, and howls at the full moon.
Beneath this, a drone of car engines.
I have to go outside to hear any crickets.
Before too long, I have to go to sleep, somehow.

Learning How

small green plastic slide
toddler on a young mom’s lap
learning how to whee!

Never Mind Why

I think I’ve started an adventure
that’s almost certain to go tragic
sooner or later.

Irony and Piety

I commute between irony and piety.
Can I say what I’m inclined to say
or am I forced to censor certain truths?

Why must her pretty gray hair be called blonde?
Why can’t I even be slightly annoyed?
Why can’t I doubt what can’t be proven true?

Then I go home to my cynical son.
We can discuss the wars of ancient Greece
or the behavior of some anime girl.

There is no sharp edge between green and blue.
My mood swings are often unimportant.
Can I believe what can’t be proven false?

I think I’m getting too old to be old.
The future may have ended long ago.

copyright © 2015 Carl Miller

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