09 November 2014

Grain pattern on drying concrete

                         by Peter Waldor

New Parents, Bluegrass Festival

The number of powered
sugar granules spilling
off a funnel cake exceeds
the three hundred sextillion
stars of the universe
Some powder sticks to the dough
and some powder falls,
as one bleary-eyed parent
passes the cake over
their newborn baby,
to the other bleary-eyed parent.
A streak of powder lands
on the infant's head.
Both parents are large
How perfect that they both are
the way they are . . .
One shades the child
as they, beginners,
concentrate on a diaper change.

The Last of the Original Forms

After disaster,
when the demolition crew
took down the old
concrete column, they found
on its inside,
a wood form the builder
forgot to remove.
A man with a chisel and small sledge
freed the plank before
they turned the column
into rubble and wire.
He took it home,
washed, sanded, and placed it
in a child's room as a shelf.
Five pings of the small sledge
to free the form, the last
of the original forms.
Who knows where
the others ended up,
each plank leaving its own
grain pattern, where it braced
the drying concrete.

From The American Poetry Review, September/October 2014.

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