Two Poems

Silent Movies
for Georgie & all children

[audio link]

I brush my teeth every mourning. A shadow watches me from the corner of my reflection reminding me of life's mysteries: a speeding car races onward impacting the serial adventure where the hero escapes, but this time he's hit without apology. Waiting for a siren singing louder than a silent movie, he winks at danger. I step into the mirror and we're playing toy cars again, but the hero lies there like a lifeless piece of plastic. I call a plastic ambulance, but it's too late. The plastic hospital is helpless. Outside the mirror I'm driven to write an obituary. Instead, I drive to work in a real car, stopping for children in crosswalks. I smile like I know them. They wave.



[audio link]

The phone called into my dream from the place where heroes go. It was my father sitting shadowy under the brim of his fedora. I asked him why he didn't answer. He said he didn't have one. White moonlight beheld wounds from his own sword. You have some too, he said, but you don't want to look. Smokeless and sober he waited for me to talk, but my jaw was frozen. I pulled up the blinds to see, but he disappeared. He was gone on one of those sales trips that made him stranger than a dream.

—Charles Trimberger, Milwaukee, WI