Posts Tagged ‘Idaho’

Judy Lane


When I see the same split-level ranch,

when I perceive the grass, flat as a week of rain,

when I see the street, laid out plainly as the next

that runs parallel and the ones perpendicular

all the same, all named for sons and daughters

now gone, I see this street in suburbs far

from home and the hills that rise up near

my home and when I see the house, beige

and white as it always was, I feel the same sad

emptiness the house feels now that we have fled

and we carry on as if the textured white walls

meant nothing. The cement heart of the basement,

nothing. The carpet and walls, interchangeable,

the closet doors, rickety and expendable. We

see now that all the doors conceal nothing, our

secrets out in the front yard for everyone to see

like a mattress I lay upon, naked.

Look at me, my body proclaims,

I am just like everybody else.

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You went to school in what passed for the inner city with the black kids, and Mexicans and maybe a few Greeks. But you were kids and you chased each other across the dangerous blacktop. The slides were hot metal and the monkey bars seemed to be made from old pipes. Often a child fell from the metal dome or from a ladder. You cried and you laughed. This is where you made best friends. This is where a boy wanted to hold your hand, sweaty from square dancing, and later you cried. Not everything made sense the way that math added up to 10, for ten fingers. The building was old and sometimes, during lunch, you answered the phone in the office.

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Idaho (poem 22)

Idaho Prose Poem

            From the State Sonnet Series


Idaho, Gem

State, though

what is meant by

“gem”? I always think

of Opals.  Are opals found in Idaho?

 Known for potatoes, I think of alfalfa,

  the scent of water laying all night in fertile,

green ditches. I think of all the golf courses covered

in grass, the silver heads of sprinklers turning in the

heavy humid dusk. Nights around the fire with dust

on our shoes. The way we lied while we smiled. My

Own Private Idaho. Washed away, the way mountains

and memories erode. Idaho, you taste of pepper-

mint schnapps and clove cigarettes. All sins.




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