Four Poems

Latenight Specters

Barefoot man in the restaurant,
his voice knows the names
of all who pass him by.
Older man than me,
his way is not secure,
but no one’s ever is.
Shoeless friend,
to all but me
knows more of life
than I could ever hope to,
not because he’s lived it
any better,
but because the two
seem to have an understanding
between them.

Graduation Night

I feel somehow that I have
lived this scene before,
taken these measured steps toward
the final event of my youth.
I don’t know when,
but once, I’m sure I saw the faces,
heard the speeches,
heard my name
called with the rest.

I see them now, together,
gold-robed figures walking straight,
heads held high.
I hear the murmurs of the crowd
as they beckon for the end.
No one realizes that the end
is a long way off
and that this is
only a beginning.

Our teachers say that when this is over,
we will go our separate ways,
and forget the memories of our past
and of this night.
Still, though, I feel
that somewhere, someday, some way,
we will again be together as a group.

Speak Easy

Sit down my friends and drink
your cares away as though
there’s nothing to concern you.

Sit down my friends
and never bother
with the clock.

There’s nothing like
a little company to help one
pass the time.

We all have problems, that is true
but, for tonight, just let them slip away,
and have a drink on me.

We’re only here for such a short time,
so my friends, please,
sit down.

Little League

The small figure stands,
clinching the bat,
waiting for the final pitch.

His chest heaves once,
and he glances toward the stands
where his mother used to sit.

He sees the quick,
white spot
moving toward him.

He swings
and knocks it
out of the park.

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