Monday, April 4, 2011

Juvenilia III: College Poems

More of my early poetry that escaped the Great Shredding is contained in a small notebook of poems I gave my mother for Christmas, 1975. Both my mother and her mother, my beloved Grandma Skatzes, wrote poetry, so I put together a small selection of poems by each of us for my mom's present that year.

I wrote in the introduction: Three generations of women and all of them found it necessary at some time to pick up a pen and make sense of their world through the written word. No one of them writes with the same style as the other two, but the similarities, the same blood in each of them, are evident. For this reason, the authors are listed as Skatzes, Skatzes Nelson, and finally Nelson, to show the progression through the decades. Maybe someday it will be extended to a fourth generation.

I am including two poems, one today and one tomorrow, from Three Generations: An Anthology.


Wonder Bread

During the season, they were pushing football,   
    Each loaf of bread concealing a cardboard faced player:
    Cockcroft and Gries.
Smiling patiently, we extracted them and set them aside for youngest sibling.

But now, Christmas and all its tinsel brings a change.
No more hulking heroes these
But instead a game,
    Wondrous and childish:
    Mazes and secret circles to erase for answers.

Michel sees this newest toy and,
    Forgetful of his sixteen years,
Picks it up in eagerness. Catching my eye,
He lays it down with a self-conscious shrug.
"Hunh" says he.

Each of us, from our lordly adult heights,
Keeps a watch over the cards,
Waiting for the other to turn so we can race ourselves
    To the magic and secret circles of childhood.


debbi said...

Such a great visual. I feel like I am watching from above. Another wonderful poem.

Anonymous said...

Oh, what a wonderful moment to capture. We never had prizes in loves of bread, but i do recall the prizes in cereal boxes. Four children ate the cereal, but there was only one prize.