Looseleaf Poem

April 10, 2009
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I look around this small space
That has become so familiar;
The leaning tower of sticky notes
Next to a box of stamps
That hides from view a wooden box
And a small case stuffed with markers
That probably don’t work;
Things I have collected
But never had a need for.

A stack of old books,
Old memories;
A folder from piano lessons,
A book on fine arts,
My journal from a science experiment,
A book of bedtime stores,
And ‘Songwriting For Dummies’.
Is that stack full of memories
Or is it a small memorial
Of a life that seems forever ago?

I come across a box
That once held a bracelet, I think
And open it to find
A card inside
That reads
“Carefully constructed with you in mind”
I smile
“that’s a lie” I say
And throw away
My little box of lies.

Half-finished drawings
And songs with no melodies
Hide inside
My old paper filer.
Postcards I bought
For the pictures on the front
An old friendship contract
And past birthday cards
That I neatly tucked away
Between looseleaf paper;
All thoughts left unfinished,
Dreams I haven’t had,
Years that have passed
And stolen away pieces of my life

Old schoolwork;
My first failing grade
I half-grin at the little 58
Scribbled onto my history test.
Science notes
And workbook pages
Something on genetics
Which we’re studying right now.
How much do teachers
Like to repeat themselves?

I find pictures now
Tons of them.
Dani’s birthday party
Who-knows-how-many years ago
And the sixth grade dance
Geez, I didn’t know how to take a picture back then!
Yearbook pictures;
We were so cute as kids.
When was that replaced
With makeup and straightening irons?

And now I turn to the newer pile
That sits neatly in the corner;
High school registration
And a note he’ll never see.
Some newer songs I’ve written
And a stack of blank paper
Ready for inspiration
That has yet to come.
Ready for me to write out my life
And then tuck away the pages
To happen upon some other day.

I look around now
What a mess!
Funny, I started out cleaning…
With not a song or poem out of me for days
I hunt around for a pen that works,
Grab a piece of looseleaf paper,
And glance up to the second shelf
And my leaning tower of sticky notes.





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