Lit up across the Interstate,
the video board message stated
‘Look, listen, and live.
Watch out at railroad crossings.’
I thought it a strange bulletin,
for in all my years traveling the Interstate,
I had yet to see a train crossing one,
nor were there any train crossing signs,
stop signs, or even a traffic light.
Yes, there were plenty of orange cones
and road construction signs, but maintenance
was preferred over pot holes in the road.
The only signs found were for deer crossings,
but no deer were currently in sight.
Maybe later on, in the middle of night,
there would be a train of deer crossing the road,
the first deer wearing an engineer’s hat,
and the last one, carrying a flashing a red lamp.
Clickity clack, clickity clack,
watch out for the deer train running down the tracks.
Life goes on somewhere,
where mine has been put on hold,
recovering what ails me.
Had I forgotten,
or just did not remember?
Other things were on my mind,
like the liverwurst and chocolate
syrup sandwich someone made me eat,
or did I do that on purpose?
The ol’ memory board was on the fritz,
and the sandwich was all I could think about,
and its nasty taste,
everything else in my mind had gone blank.
I was told a grilled limburger cheese sandwich
with cilantro was next on the meal menu,
something I could hardly wait for. That was,
if I could remember it long enough
to escape from its fate.
On Turning Sixty-nine
There was something about the number sixty-nine
that seemed very familiar, a number
that might have been significant at one time,
but now that I had reached
that grand old age of sixty-nine,
I no longer remembered why that number
stuck out in my mind,
nor I could I say I remembered every
one of the years I had been around either
as I ran out of breath before blowing
out all the candles on the birthday cake.
Some wishes are never achieved,
and my wish of trying to remember every event
in my life was just another one of them, unfulfilled.
I began painting my masterpiece,
the house was my canvas.
I was the next Jackson Pollock
or Pablo Picasso, the latest genius,
painting all of the house in one color,
the color of blue to match the skies.
It was my abstract painting,
one for public display only.
I painted each door and window,
not wanting to see what was going on
with the rest of the world,
nor could anyone else look in.
It was a house of mystery,
an insane asylum.
Come take a look,
on display in your local neighborhood.
About the Author
Duane Anderson currently lives in La Vista, NE. He has had poems published in Fine Lines, Cholla Needles, and several other publications. He is the author of ‘Yes, I Must Admit We Are Neighbors’ (Cyberwit.net – 2021) and ‘On the Corner of Walk and Don’t Walk’ (Pacific Poetry Press -2021).