Walking With Harry Chapin

Lazy afternoons now, I go to the woods and fields alone

Saddened by my children’s disinterest in these things

I had hoped would bind us across

The time and distance of their adulthood, which now

Appears so imminent

But how does the burr of a sawtooth oak

Or the fringed edge of an owl’s found feather

Compete with the latest garish Instagram post,

Or the adolescent self-imposed seclusion

Protecting them from the questions of their foolish parents

With each crackling step upon the forested floor

The fallen leaves whisper the words of Harry Chapin,

Singing of cats in cradles and silver spoons

And I am reminded of another time, another life

In which my own reflection was seen poorly

As if in a clouded mirror

And as I searched to see clearly

I found the hurt in the aged eyes of those who raised me

As my Sunday afternoon basketball games with friends

Took the place of an afternoon spent

Casting light line upon the water

From an old, worn dock

With an old man who loved me


©2020 Lenny Wells

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