Contact

contact zone

The rain woke me
tapping on the window
reminding me of a boyhood friend

I never had who’d toss gravel
against the glass until I eased
myself out crept to the edge

of the porch roof & shimmied
down the walnut’s rough trunk
I did that a few times even

without the prompt
someone might be out there
it was worth checking

& something always was
I’d hear rapid footsteps on the lawn
a rustle in the compost pit

I’d climb into bed half an hour later
with dirt on my feet & grass
stains on my PJs breathing hard

pull the blankets over my head
& listen to the blood drumming
behind my ears

7 Replies to “Contact”

  1. There is something indeed haunting about this poem. Sort of a cross between Tom Sawyer and rural mischief. A spray of rain or sleet does sound a lot like gravel on the pane. I personally would have eschewed the tree shimmying for the front door, though. One could be thankful, however, that their weapon of choice was not toilet paper in the trees.

  2. I hate to say this, but that’s a sweet poem. I think so much about the brother my son never had. He’s always throwing gravel, but I’m not sure at whose window.

    I did that a few times even

    without the prompt

    That’s fun, with the picture and all.

    I love this poem.

  3. I agree with prior comments — both haunting and sweet.

    Apropos of nothing, I was just walking on the Rivanna Trail, and on the way back, I briefly saw a Great Blue Heron. Even glimpsed from a distance, it was breathtaking — an immediate reminder of why the Indians considered them sacred.

  4. marja-leena – Hey, you’re right – it does look a bit like an aerial photo, doesn’t it?

    Joan – Well, it was probably from Tom Sawyer that I got the idea of friends signaling to each other that way. But our remote location and my loner nature meant that I didn’t really have any frineds like that. We had strict bedtimes and my parent’s bedroom was adjacent to mine, hence the subterfuge.

    Peter, dale – Thanks for commenting.

    David – GB Herons have more than a bit of the prehistoric about them, don’t they? We’re only a mile from a small river here, so occasionally one will fly overhead.

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