Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Duane Anderson - Three Poems

Lost in the Fire
The couple held up a sign
“We lost everything in the fire.”
Maybe they wanted money
from everyone who passed by
as they sat on the steps of a building
but he did not see another sign asking for money.

He passed by and
walked across the street
to a store that sold greeting cards.
Purchasing a card,
he addressed the envelope to
“The people who lost everything in the fire.”
since he didn’t know their names
and walked back across the street
and handed them the card
telling them his condolences
for their loss.

He walked on.
not waiting for them
to open the card.
He didn’t care to know
their further thoughts,
after all,
they already had his sympathy.

Where’s the Pooch?

Today I was asked twice,
where’s the pooch,
where’s your dog,
as I took a walk alone.
People were used to seeing me
with my dog
since I usually took her on
two to three walks a day
depending on the weather.
We were a well known
neighborhood staple.
One wasn’t seen without the other.

Now I can only tell them as they ask
that she is no longer alive
having lost the use of both hind legs
due to a disc disease.
I continue my walks.
Maybe not as many
though the pace is much faster now
since I have no need or desire
to sniff at every little thing crossing my path.
We were a twosome,
one of the threads of the neighborhood.
As life moves on,
the memories remain.

Tell Me My Name

Even as I sat listening to the song,
I did not remember the melody
or hear the words sung.
My concentration was in another world
somewhere I know
I have been too many times before,
but still I am unable to describe it.
It is like seeing one of my best friends
on the street,
who calls me by name,
but I do not speak his name
because somehow I cannot remember it.

Time passes,
the thought remains in my mind
until I remember the name,
then the thought quickly passes,
like questioning yourself
if this is your right street address
or correct phone number.
Sometimes we momentarily forget things.
Sometimes we never sit down
to learn them.

Duane currently lives in La Vista, NE.  He has had poems published in Saga, Poetry Now, Telephone, Lunch, Touchstone, Pastiche: Poems of Place, Fine Lines, The Ibis Head Review, Omaha World- Herald and several other publications.

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