After Seeing the Art Film “SLAM”
Last night I saw SLAM a film about words
words that inspired magnetized riveted
transformed an unlikely and unlikable bunch
with backgrounds inconceivable
Some words were foul the scenery too
but folks were delighting in those words
thoughts celebrating ideas themes
Strings of syllables flowed like lava
covering all who came in contact
Joy sorrow gut-emptying
Gotta get those words out before they fester
Hate must exit might as well send it away
I’ve been thinking of myself as a poet
At what point did I become one?
I belong to two poetry groups
many gifted and accomplished
We’re all white we think dream write
acquire learn accept are accepted
But…backgrounds so different.
Who else among us
survived an overturned buggy
after the horse was spooked
Picked flowers in a neighbor’s ravine
and brought fistfuls to the May altar
where Mary was waiting
Taught in a one-room school
in fifteen-minute segments
Plumbing out yonder…
So…am I a Poet?
Ideas form then jostle
jolt to find a way out
Words leap in line
looking for a procession
to form a coherent chain.
Her broken relish dish is still on the counter.
It has been there almost four months.
oval porcelain with hand-painted roses
and cutout spaces for handles.
The narrow gold band around the rim has faded.
Somehow I can’t part with the pieces.
My mother and I were never close.
She seemed content in her rambling house
on that fertile land while my dreams soared.
She died before we could become friends
and now this precious link is shattered.
I never put it into the dishwasher, used it just
for guests and always set it right back
in the china cabinet except for that one
time. Maybe I could find another
in an antique shop, but she had my name
on this one, taped to the bottom
to make sure I got it.
Stop by a week from now, a month,
six months, it may still be there.