They were like peepholes into
a glacial cave; they were like
cabochon jewels mounted one
upon another; the cataract eyes
the sodas slid from, garnets
of melt, yet still so cold the bottles were hard to hold
as we stood there– had to–
to drink them, then return,
sliding each into a chipped
wooden rack

slatted against
the white tiled glare of gas stations
that were themselves shaped, curved
like the cars, flat-topped
like the drivers, hubbed
with burnish–it all comes up
as I sit here trying to meditate away
the sadness, waiting for you,
who packs to go back, while me, I’m staying on,
only sitting in the car to avoid
another ticket, till, as I connect
with the breath, my nose is permeated
with the smell of gasoline, the guy in front, and so sad,
so sad (even though it’s only
a few more days), so sad
that I try to find in that smell
some release–the magic of
way back once
when it was an inhalation both heady
and thumb-smudged, dangerous, male,
oil-creased–a scent backdropped with levitations
of the dark and tubular–

the regular mechanical as reliably mysterious
as the thick lips of glass that circled
those swallows of freeze we
shivered down, never dreaming those bottles built
for re-fills would some day be far
beyond our grasp–

as will be
this moment I wait in,
this moment in which I am so sad
that you are going,
this moment that will not come back, no matter how

I might miss it–


Poem of sorts for Margaret Bednar’s post “Play it Again, Sam” on With Real Toads.  Margaret brings back older prompts.  I am returning here to Ella’s prompt about writing something that comes up after sitting quietly, and also Shay’s (Fireblossom) about magic. 

Also posting belatedly to dVerse Poets Pub Open Link Night.

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14 Comments on “Return”

  1. This bubbles up memories for me..I remember the stations, the smells, the cold sodas. It also brings me father to my memory. He was a mechanic…the smell of grease permeates my memory. I wish I could refill my dreams with one more day with my father.

  2. margaret Says:

    “never dreaming those bottles built
    for re-fills would some day
    be far beyond our grasp–

    as will be
    this moment I wait in,”

    ^ ADORE !!! (sorry to quote back at you)

    and I just “can’t stand” the ending line as I know how longing for something to return (or something NOT to go) never changes anything… sigh

  3. to sit there is usually when the sadness catch up with us.. I love the description of the vending machine with it’s color and crystals… the repetition of sad makes it so much stronger, and the drawing that evokes a time that have passed just like that end when everything is gone in whirlwind of change…

  4. hedgewitch Says:

    Really, I don;t know how you could more strongly evoke this picture of waiting, of wanting things to be different, k, except with a movie or something–the trip back in time to childhood becomes a flashback that tries hard to stop the present and its parallels, but can’t, because life is like those wheels that take us to flat-topped gas stations and so far(too) beyond where we want to go, away from where we want to be, even as we enjoy the freeze in our throats that is both a valediction and a warning of the temporal nature of all pleasures. A fine poem, full of wonderful language (and bonus points for ‘cabochon’ especially in that context..)

    • ManicDdaily Says:

      You know I hadn’t thought of freeze in that way as stopping time, but, of course, it is, (which pleases me!) I was able to squeeze out something more this morning, but same kind of hang dog tone! so maybe I’ll wait to post, I don’t know. Thanks. k .

      On Mon, Sep 29, 2014 at 10:30 AM, ManicDDaily wrote:


  5. Helen Says:

    I never tire of reading your poetry … it was Pepsi in bottles with the ancient (50’s) logo ~~ chocolate chip cookies from Meyer’s Bakery on the side.

  6. utopiandesires Says:

    there is some sort of magical essence hidden in all of your writing

  7. Jamie Dedes Says:

    Poignant. Evocative. Something quite powerful. Many memorable phrases. I love this.

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