2015 PAD – Day 27 (belated)

The day 27 prompt at Poetic Asides was “write a looking back poem.” Since so many of my poems are “looking back” pieces, the prompt wasn’t much of a stretch. It also left a wide field for my imagination to wander. Then I saw a story about Joni Mitchell’s rumored coma and remembered encountering a certain song almost 40 years ago:


In the communal barn where everyone gathered,
students took turns at the grand piano.
They played classical pieces or old-time standards,
but what captured my attention
was this lovely melody with haunting chords
that soared into the rafters and fluttered
in and out like doves. I asked around
until someone said the song might be
“For Free” by Joni Mitchell. I searched

out the album when I got home,
and there were those chords, then the words
the pianist hadn’t sung. Even now,
that song takes me back to the high-beamed barn,
Vermont in August, the creak of worn rattan furniture,
and the serious voices of serious young writers
discussing literature over martinis.

I imagine the streets of nearby Middlebury
and see a busker fingering his clarinet.
A lithe young blonde crosses against the light
to stand before him, shy and admiring,
before she tosses coins
into his upturned hat.

SociBook del.icio.us Digg Facebook Google Yahoo Buzz StumbleUpon
This entry was posted in My Poetry, National Poetry Month, Nudges & Nudgery, Poetry-Related, Writing Prompts and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply