Monday, June 12, 2017



Today is my sister's birthday

My sister who took her life

It's the first time since she died

That I have remembered this day of her birth

When she was alive, I always remembered, it's what

You do when someone is living, you think of them

Now that she is dead I have no way of getting to her

That couldn't have been her intention at taking her life —

She always wanted someone to call her, visit her, be by her side

But now we can't get to her

Death is after all a failure

To see all that I saw today and she hasn't

Who first taught me where to look


After the flood

a true flood

where houses

and forests

and people

were washed

away, truly a flood,

I worked on an island

lodged of full trees that

were lodged with large stones

lodged with mud lodged with

sewer grasses lodged with more

trees and I cut and cut for weeks on

end until I had piles of wood back

at home, and I cut through all

these trees to get to the river

a most beautiful river

In A Hollow

We've walked from the center of town

to this park on private property

donated by the people who own

the land as a tribute to their son

who died 20 years ago

there is no one here but us

no part of the neighborhood seems awake

a new trophy home is being built down the way

the lumber piles, the dirt piles, the open shapes 

   where windows will be

the boy died at age 20 so now he would be 40 no longer a boy

the park is a hollowed retreat of woodlands and streams

ideal pathways that curl and go hidden

some mother or father or both have put a great

deal of thought and wonder into this place

and the boy is dead but not to them and not even to me

I walk a stone staircase of well chosen flat stone up a rise

to a structure where inside one can sit on handmade seats

around a handmade table where a notebook has been

left to write down any handmade thoughts

I write in there that this boy is very lucky

I know the place is natural and left simple and loved

where any spirit or being just couldn't resist returning

I've been there twice

I've felt the boy twice  


Bob Arnold