You’re Good ‘til Midnight
She had told them, “You’re good ‘til midnight”,
to know you’ll be good, if not necessarily right,
for a certtain length of time,
when you could, you’re aware, be so bad.
Or if not bad, like committing-a -crime bad,
at least prone to error which,
if big enough, could amount to the same thing.
A sad commentary on where you find yourself
Like a fourth of July parade, the spectators lined each side,
comfortable and expectant in their canvas deck chairs,
no red fire engines or marching bands filling the air
with music this time, though.
No hastily-made floats, either,
carrying a load of candy-throwing children dressed in
red, white and blue.
Nor, for that matter, are there any groups, colorfully-clad,
walking and triking randomly behind bright banners
promoting civic pride.
Many times he had visited his son and family
in rural Vermont
often in the fall, when the color was high.
This time, he’d missed it by a few weeks,
but everything else
was the same:
The back roads winding through the maple trees,
the trees these days connected
by colorful plastic tubing,
to bring the sap to a gathering trough.
He stretched the canvas tight over the wood frame
an applied his base coat, a light blue, wanting to
give it depth to match the blue above the clouds,
infinite blue he wants to say.
Choosing the right green just as tricky.
November in the Green Mountain State offers both
dark firs and the meadows’ dimming grasses,
and too, the faded brilliance of maple and oak,
their leaves reduced now to various shades
of rust, waiting for the first winter storm
to set them free.
Home is what you return to when you’ve been away,
It’s where you end up, after Texas and Vermont, say,
when there’s no place else
calling you back, again and again, to that comfortable
space, that familiar ground,
a place that draws a contented smile even though
there may be no one else around.
It’s not that each room conveys a perfect story,
sweet with memories of a blissful past,