CS Brandywine River 1974

Long ago photo

A no-no to keep

Ex caught me wearing glasses

Kept anyway

Looks like I’m trying to hide

Bending down

Palely pregnant yet unaware


Wish I could go

Back into the photo

Rare, happy time

Especially when camping

There is my pumpkin Gremlin

Behind the tree

No back seat

One hundred dollars off the sale price

Not sure where my dog Tarot is

Probably sleeping under the table


Do you want to know

Why I want to go

Back into the photo?

The red folder in my hand

Contains all my poems

Written from age four

(My best line in crayon was:

“I am big/Like a pig”)

Twenty-two years of poetry

My nineteen sixties stuff written in

Crowded, dark coffeehouses or

In my bedroom during those

Dark nights of my soul

(Like Paul Simon, protected

By my books and poetry)

Some happy words, too

But scarcely remembered


Added to the folder over the years

Then started a new life in the South

My, to me, precious words

Stored in plastic crates in sheds

(Moved fourteen times in thirteen years)

Metal sheds baking in hundred degree


Sheds that rusted

Eventually opening to the rain

Grateful for the coolness

Devastating to my plastic crates

Harboring moistness

Insects creeping onto my words

My precious words

That are lost

As the ink washed away

As the paper turned to pulp

As the words became untrue

Because I was no longer who

I thought I was once upon a time


So if I could enter the photo

Remove the red folder from

My younger self

Jump into the pumpkin Gremlin

(Taking my dog Tarot, of course)

And drive far, far away

Who would I be today?

© 2015 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: Camping on the Brandywine River


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