|When everything is working just right--|
the sewing machine tredle makes the little girl swing.
So here is the poem for the second piece--
I forage through snapshots
piled like fallen leaves.
I crunch time.
I cinch it accordion-style.
memories staged and bleached
with a wash of busyness.
A frantic hum and whir of minutes
startled to stillness.
A parade of my faces,
The march of selves stepping off years--
hostessing and holidays
recitals and graduations--
All those camera ready occasions,
All those cautious, polite smiles,
Leave me lost
fingering my own paper life.
As though I'd happened upon
the frail shell I laboriously fashioned
washed up along a beach.
I search each face for some common thread.
I look beyond the dated hairdos,
the shoulder pads and mini skirts,
all those nostalgic settings,
For something in the eye I might know--
a shard of self
linking all those separate selves.
Some continuity ringing like a clear note.
Some thing that feels true.
Some thing that summons kindness
for all those earnest strangers
that look like me.