(About a 2 minute read)
I interrupted Evelyn before she had properly asked her question.
“A poetry slam in Manitou? Sure I’ll go! You bet!
Now what were you going to ask?”
That was yesterday. Tonight I’m thinking, “How rude of me!
When was the last time I interrupted someone?” But then,
Twenty years since your last slam is time enough to get hungry.
Besides. Besides, I’m probably almost over the trauma of it, I hope.
To speak as an artist, Sarah and Josh did it right — visually.
Good hosts, those two — visually. On Poor Richard’s quiet patio,
Candles on every table, summer’s stars above, colored Christmas lights.
It all came together to create a bit of magic that night — visually.
Ah, the volunteers! There had to have been a typo in the ad,
The ad requesting poets willing to sound their work.
There had to have been a typo in that ad.
Someone must have crossed out “poets requested for a public reading”,
And then inserted, “Compassionate, soft-spoken folks needed to whisper
Phone books in soothing tones for the benefit and relief of insomniacs”.
An easy mistake to make in a newspaper office on a day busy enough,
Busy enough to kill six, maybe seven people from overwork.
I admit it was my own fault. I confess I’m to blame for having picked
A table way back, way out of hearing range. Second row and center.
But how was to I to know the couple in front of me would be so boisterous
As to loudly breathe? Couldn’t hear much of anything over their crashing ocean waves.
Now and then a lucky breeze would blow six to a dozen words my way.
All of them uttered in monotones.
Such a refreshing breeze! I hung on every word.
Or to be more precise, I felt deeply every word, just as if it were my hanging.
But what a wonderful night it was!
What a wonderful night it turned out to be!
A wonderful night!
A wonderful night to spend counting the Christmas lights.
Ecstatically, step by step, I approached the blissful goal
Of summing all the red bulbs that night.
There were 144 in all, and every last one of them a blessed relief to behold.