Thursday, September 6, 2007

Poetry Thursday Rehab, Week One

I'm glad to see that Delia at Left-Handed Trees is posting Poetry Thursday this week. She wrote a lovely mini-essay on poetry and reading TS Eliot, as well as the optional idea for next week: confront your fear. The post next week will appear on Carolee's site, Polka Dot Witch.

I think this a way for us PT junkies to rehab gracefully. So, here is my offering for this week, which I actually wrote last weekend.

At the Howard Johnson's on Cornhusker Highway

Labor Day Weekend

Children run wild
in colorful bathing suits, clutching
2 liters of generic Mountain Dew
while slip-sliding around the indoor pool.

Parents line the edge of the fenced-in
swimming hole, sipping $2 Buds
and watered down margaritas.
They say no and spank bottoms lightly
when asked for pizza and quarters
for the video games. Inside

teenage girls smear black
mascara rivulets running down their cheeks,
and playfully splash ambivalent
teenage boys. Adolescent acquaintances
(introduced in the hallway last night)
tentatively hold hands
under the jacuzzi bubbles, and roll
their eyes at their too awkward, too

enthusiastic younger siblings. They holler
at the kids to go play
in the room, watch cable, go anywhere else
but here. Everyone is practicing
for real life, assuming it starts
just after tomorrow's long drive home.


LJCohen said...

"Everyone is practicing
for real life,"

Yup--really captures the end of summer vacations. Kiddos started school today, so it really is back to 'real life'.

Happy Poetry Thursday.

gautami tripathy said...

This is not a poem. This is a song!!

Rambler said...

just after tomorrow's long drive home.
loved this part..

split ends said...

I agree that the end is really what makes this poem marvelous. It sends the reader back to reexamine the characters introduced throughout. Plus it is so true-to-life. Very nice!

paisley said...

having not been on a vacation such as that in i am embarrassed to say more than 10 years,, many more,, i thank you for recalling to my mind the enjoyable lazy day at the motel pool.....

...deb said...

Perfect last lines for a great travelogue.

I used to sneak into the local Hoiday Inn pool when I was a teenager and pretend I was a guest. Small desert-town entertainment. (You captured that, too-- :-) except for the indoor part.)

Clockworkchris said...

Hi, I'm back...finally. Sorry it's been so long. Work has been a problem so I am taking a haitus. This was a really interesting post. I loved the last stanza. "Practicing for real life"
That really says a lot.

I hope you will come back and see what I have done with my blog. I am writing poetry again, although I'm a bit rusty.

tumblewords said...

For sure, the final line finishes well and brings sit home. Nice topic!

jonas said...

terrific. just had my first child this summer and the relief i felt when i saw his boy parts, knowing i would never have to experience the anxiety of "teenage girls smear black
mascara rivulets running down their cheeks,and playfully splash ambivalent teenage boys." Thanks for sharing, really takes me back to similar moments in my past, man I was a hell raiser.

Jessica said...

Wow thanks for all the comments, everyone! Sorry I'm behind on resonding -- life's been a little busy here lately.

LJCohen -- I wasn't even thinking about the end of summer, beginning of school -- shows you how out of the typical school year *I* am. But I think that adds to the interpretation. :)

gautami -- if only I could sing... ;)

tumblewords, paisley, rambler & split ends -- thanks for the compliments!

...deb-- sneaking in to the Holiday Inn? I was too much of a wuss as a kid to do that. :) My dad, who lives in CA, was shocked that we had no outdoor pools in the hotels in the midwest. When we have winter for 7 months, we need the shelter.

clockwork chris -- welcome back!! thanks for stopping by!

jonas -- LOL! I can't decide if I would want a teenage boy (anger issues, football, drinking) or a teenage girl (drama & drinking). Maybe I'll wait a while longer. :)