Neighborhood Walk

Walks have always served as a catalyst for clarity in my life; they give me time to organize my thoughts and pray and think and not think. My usual walk cuts a path out the back door of my office, around the parking lot, up W. Washington street towards the post office, across Hudson, and back down W. Washington. On my way I pass housing projects, the Miracle Hill Rescue Mission, and people. People—that’s the important part. I see a lot of things, but I miss the people too often; usually I’m distracted by my own thoughts and problems. Every so often though I pull myself out of my own head long enough to see the truly wonderful life around me. These times are essential; these times are poetry. In my life, poetry has served as a means of observation and remembrance. I memorize and write poetry to accomplish these two purposes, to see and hear in a meaningful way. “Neighborhood Walk” is one such instance.

cracks and
blue sky—

Sweat soaked
sun baked
old men
pop two
buds to
buzz off
noon in
shade tree
as a
front stoop
sings a-
cross the
street: "Myyy
friend diiieeed
in a
car wreck

lift up
your eyes
from ground
grey daze
to tip
top life
green things
and see.

PoetryChristian Shockley