Walk in the Park

I walk in the park
dragging a stubborn ankle,
left leg imploring the right.

They watch, curious,
or maybe they’re sorry.
Steps quicken,
the air around them
grows sticky
with grateful perspiration.

Listen to the throb of
leaking headphones,
faster, faster,
sticking to the slow lane.

I wonder if the eyes
on the benches
older, wiser,
see more.

See through the
elaborate charade
of limb calling limb,
see through the mask
of pain hurting pain,
see through the
incoherent balance,
foot before
inadequate foot.

Could they see the soul,
mirroring the legs?
Could they see time
mocking the laps?
Could they see the future
take one cautious step,
the mangled past
unwilling to move forward,
impossible to leave behind.

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35 thoughts on “Walk in the Park

  1. This is such a vivid poem. I can picture it, and the ending — that entire last stanza — is excellent. Really thought-provoking to think about ‘unwilling to move forward, impossible to leave behind.’ Welcome to Poetry Pantry. Hope you will enjoy meeting other poets here!

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  2. I am SO happy you found Poets United. I hope you keep coming back. Your writing is wonderful. This is a most intriguing poem….I especially resonate with the left leg imploring the right (my legs are the same, LOL)…..And the older wiser eyes on the bench – yes, they see more! Loved this. Hope to enjoy much more of your work.

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    1. Thank you so much Sherry. I hope to keep posting here. Have had such a lovely welcome and have started reading amazing work. Will spend as much time as I can catching up. 🙂

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  3. Oh, love the imagery. I echo so many others who have commented. Very well done, indeed. ‘ unwilling to move forward’, what a line. So much weight to those words. Great writing!! 🙂

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  4. You have painted a complete portrait so vividly….but the line that stood out to me as so brilliant in its profound simplicity is “leaking headphones”—yes! That is what they are, but I’ve never thought to describe them that way…such an apt description in the midst of this moving poem.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you… you’re right I think. Sometimes pain which seems so obvious to the person suffering is quite invisible to everyone else…. maybe it’s just that the masks work well.

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