Bio Note: I live in the high desert between Santa Fe and Albuquerque. Rain is a constant topic. Anything that grows here is either a wildflower or a poem. Some of mine have been picked up by Valparaiso Poetry Review, Blue Nib, Sheila-Na-Gig, and SoFloPoJo.
The Hardest Drawer to Close
No graceful name for it, its bottom paint scratched from years of shoving things aside, from not finding what you want, yet big enough for stuff you thought might somehow become useful when the right need came along. The blunt edge of utility. Like this broken-tip screwdriver; for prying what you wouldn’t risk a good screwdriver on. And an unspiraling roll of American flag stickers, waxed paper end in a loose curl where the flags were removed, the vacant paper rasping on itself like an abandoned snake skin, intact as if tearing it off would offend. It’s worked its way to the back beside a photograph of a horse and unknown man torn away from the left side of a larger picture Is it wrong to throw out someone’s memory? This broken length of cotton string is from the last kite you flew for the kids, frayed evidence that what anchors us can part of its own weight. And a partially used package of nails and picture hooks for that last family dinner photo she framed and had you hang in the kitchen, the dinner when all of us noticed the change. And this roll of scotch tape, stuck with years of dust, still able to hold things together, something that’s always been there.
Sonnet for Tools
Battered from close, dark collisions, screw driver, hammer, pliers, wrench— hardware to pry, twist, and pound, and cross off refrigerator door’s To Do list—tools that answer when asks rise to needs. In back corners: Grandma’s baby spoon; with a tin tea scoop of quieter time; and remains of a set of measuring cups— one in the flour can, another in the sugar— for drawing refinements from hand-painted jars kept on the shelf over the stove. A third was lost among the lilacs, where the mud pies were made.
The Junk Drawer’s Prayer
Free us o lords of light, Masters of things that matter. Give us hands with tasks, Tasks that make a difference. Make us relevant. Relieve us These cold deaths of indifference.
©2021 John Hicks
Editor's Note: If this poem(s) moves you please consider writing to the author (email address above) to tell her or him. You might say what it is about the poem that moves you. Writing to the author is what builds the community at Verse Virtual. It is very important. -JL