Tuesday, September 11, 2007

from the songs of childhood, #7

the orphan


an orphan is an orphan, even while
the trees go bare, even while
the curious peek, they peer
quizzing and probing, seeking
problems to be cured

his window is for keeping
hard at bay, prowlers making rounds
hauling wonder on the back, pockets
full of temptations rare, bedeviled
beads and trinkets

an orphan never sees the ocean, or
ponders with the crows, never plays
at karaoke, but learns the small lessons
tricky and twisty lessons, that may lie
unbidden at his door

an orphan may excel at haiku, perhaps
dante, read the caterwauls of sartre
if kind strangers toss them overworn
up and over, sliding through, the cautious
gates of orphandom

he may cross a field of bending corn
making ramble, glide into the ins and outs
of weary, if the walls are high and know
their duty, if the sun is giving, this
furtive ward, properly tagged

an orphan is an orphan, after papers
have been signed, stamped and folded
filed away from memory, in a room
where lives are ordered, sealed
with wax, and hope

he may sing, when gulls go far astray
when dreams seek sun, he may sing
he may

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