The World Was Old When We Got Here

we could see that, easy. Paint and birch
bark curling, dried up wells and leaky
faucets, weeping willows and bent windmills
shrieking in the breeze. Driven outside, we swung
our legs from the seats of rusted tractors tangled
in dead branches, crept into abandoned
houses graffitied by trees. We wove sticks
with bale twine to make shelters, fished
the hood of a car from the riverfor a roof, used bricks from the crumbled
cookhouse for a makeshift wall.

Inheriting ruins,
we made ruins.

Blue jeans in the wash still came out dirty. The breath
of grown-ups fermented with things unsaid. Someday
we’d understand “farm crisis,” foreclosure, FDIC. We’d see
people driving Cadillacs, rest our faces on the plush
white carpet of our own remodeled homes, remember
clover by the chicken pen, how each spring we rolled
in it, each spring it was new.
—Kara McKeever

I found this poem on Goodreads and it took me away for awhile. Back to the farm, the tractors, shelters with twine, the chicken pen and the FDIC.
Forts in the Playground May 2013 (1)
This week I discovered a new secret fort, this one in the far back corner of our playground behind our big fort. There were boards and chains and a padlock and a tipped wagon, the slide and stacked broken bricks and a doll head on a stick. Definitely a boy’s lair. I think I’ll leave a secret note or some wrapped candy hidden there for someone to discover. I wonder who.
Forts in the Playground May 2013 (2)

About Ann Laemmlen Lewis

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