|Apr/May 2013 Poetry|
Artwork by Clinton McKay
Torn Photograph, Ohio, 1923
The bicycle was speaking in its dead language.
The words were rotating. There was another
innocent life inside her riding. They pedaled
away while the picnic still traveled intently in
the bicycle's picnic basket, which preceded them,
shining boisterously enigmatic and generous.
She had named her imaginary dog Whimper
and an equally unreal goldfish Nevermore.
The father stared at the frozen photograph
as if he were about to lick it while the bicycle
continued to cycle, and the girl's held image
refused to yield the news grown oh so quickly
to adjust to the father's unconscious offering.
A love song should end at the beginning, guilty
signatures everywhere, too many gods to overlook,
but it's all one can do to just pay attention,
and it's only that love that they might have
killed some past with if the bicycle hadn't fallen to
the story rolling downhill before the daughter arrived
breaking open a different idea of the father swept along.