Recalling History

by | Oct 14, 2019 | Family, Future, Gifts, Poetry, Relationships, Thankfulness, Verse, Vision. | 0 comments

My grandfather riding

home in a horse-drawn buggy

one sunny afternoon

when, as a young boy, 

saw a man swinging from

makeshift tree gallows 

in the fall of 1889.

My father, born at night

in a sod house in ‘08

on the Oklahoma plains

west of Guymon. 

Horse and buggy hitched up

outside, waiting, just in case

granddad needed to fetch a doctor

for my grandmother’s labor. 

Family on my mother’s side ran

into their house one night, in fear. 

A “machine” seen for the first time trundled 

down Chicken Row 

headlights flashing in the distance, approaching

the family farm outside

Quitman, East Texas.

That first generation of automobile, 

a spacecraft occupied by

alien lifeforms of modernity.

Each family carries similar

histories, revealed if explored, 

oral transmissions of life-legacies 

from another time.

Our own history now developing, 

familiar to us, will be viewed 

someday in a distant future recalling

days long past, distant vapors

of history and experience.

We are living our moments

to be recalled ahead of us,

stories heard by future hearers

as strange to them as 

a man swinging on a rope, 

sod houses and horse-drawn buggies, 

machines riding through 

an East Texas summer night,

headlights bouncing along a dirt road.


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