Opening this with something of a bloggish note. This poem was written the other day, sitting by the lakeshore at Center lake after a fine afternoon in the library. I borrowed some words from Tibetan for this one, Phaki translates to “way over yonder” while the translates to “there.” The idea I am going for is trying to set up distance in two scales without cluttering the poem by writing “In far-off North/and nearby south” Regardless, enjoy.
Sitting by the lakeside
day off of work.
Afternoon thunderstorms roll by
in phaki north
and the south.
Two ducks swim by the shore
soaked heads dipping beneath undulating waves.
Birthday party behind me,
in a simple wooden cabin.
A pink balloon escaped
out onto the water,
now it drifts along just barely above the waves.
The balloon’s bottom skimming the water’s surface ever so gently,
gliding along in freedom.
The party explodes out,
rough, Mexican men
stand about in their cowboy boots and jeans
and their bent down hats,
thumbs tucked deep in pockets.
They gesture obliquely in my direction
and comment in a language I don’t understand,
but I think I get the meaning:
“What’s with the barefoot kid?
Did you invite him?
Awfully rude of him to show up and just sit over their with his paper out?
Looks homeless with that beard.
We’re tryinta have a party here,”
So I go,
Walking slowly through the gentle afternoon rain.