Posted in Passages


We’d been school friends,
good friends when we were younger,
had liked the same books, games and people.
The high school years saw a divergence of interests
a dilution of closeness
but still talked regularly –
speaking of our football teams
opinions of teachers
and prospects with girls.

No topic was taboo, except his brother,
who was bigger and stronger and beat me up once.

His mother died two years after high school
mine saw the notice and told me.
I attended her service thinking it appropriate,
a gesture he would appreciate.
He did.
His brother was there of course
bearded and dressed in black, but
not funeral black.
I went to speak to him – to offer sympathy
before I could extend my hand, he turned away.



Most of my life has been spent on the bench, occasionally called into the game by extravagance or attenuation. Waiting has turned a loner into a recorder - nondescript and inconsequential, more not noticed than overlooked - the non-vantage point of children not yet considered old enough to understand. Orphaned Islands (Un)poetry is a lifetime of picking anecdotes up and not throwing them away. Stories collected like odds and ends placed in a box in the basement, the garage, the garden shed - uncertain as to what their use might be but knowing that one day there might be one.