Sunday Poetry in the City

Poem alert, y’all. (Just a warning in case you either like or avoid such writings.)

A local poetry group was meeting this Sunday at a library near me and I decided on a whim to join them. I think the last time I wrote any poems was a decade ago. As a result I was nervous, but the group was enjoyable and supportive. The guy sitting next to me turned out to be a single dad and he said he identified with what I wrote. (I *sort of* wish I had the opportunity to talk to him more. Maybe I could have, if I was a little bolder…. aaaannnd a little more certain of what I want.)

P.S. This is good, this ‘getting out’ concept. Also, this is what I wrote (thank you poetry group for the  improvement suggestions and the title):

 

 

We Alternate Weekends

 

Yesterday I found myself unexpectedly free

in the middest part of the mid-afternoon.

I turned in my work badge and started the drive home

and because it was something I needed to do, really,

I pulled into the manicured park with the meandering path,

got out of my car,

and began to jog.

I didn’t want to be out there,

but the only way to begin to want it

is to start.

 

That evening I met some ladies at a restaurant

for a Mom’s Night Out.

I didn’t have the toddler this weekend

so it made sense to go.

I didn’t want to;

they were strangers, mostly.

Spending the money was hard to justify,

and the couch was calling me.

But I went

and talked

and laughed with some new people

about kids and co-sleeping,

working and single-parenting.

 

This morning I woke up late

(by which I mean 8am,

which is like saying you slept in all morning

when you’re a parent,

though this morning I was not a parent)

and that was strange in itself.

I put on my tennies and went out to the trails

and walked

and walked,

harder and harder up a hill of bleached grass and weeds.

On the ridgeline I started running,

not quickly,

but lumberingly,

like an airplane at the start of the runway

before it picks up speed.

The sky was a low, grey ceiling

and the hills fanned away in all directions.

I wanted to scatter over all the possible routes,

to shake off this persistent restlessness.

Instead I slowed back to a walk

as the trail passed a small clump of sagebrush.

The sky spat rain.

I zipped my fleece jacket

and my feet fell

one after another on the sandy path.

After a lifetime of watching my feet land in front of me

this is what I do,

this physical moving forward.

 

I didn’t want this for myself,

but (the single parents out there know)

the only way to begin to want it

is to start.

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