Signs by Gene Novogrodsky

Willie Mays stumbled out of the batter’s box in his last year.

He then fell on a cold chalk line.

Robert Frost mumbled lines at JFK’s inauguration.

He didn’t try to finish the poem on a frigid day.

Elizabeth Taylor flubbed lines.

She turned from heavy to fat, no more major roles.

I turned, nudged my coffee cup and hot liquid spilled on me.

“No, we can clean it up. You stay there,”

Spoken at my lined face.

I looked up and the red and yellow engine was yards away.

I fell backwards.

The engineer blew a harsh whistle.

My pant’s leg caught in the bike chain.

I fell forward:

Ripped left arm.

Cut lip.

Bruised right knee.

Bruised right wrist.

Sweets in hand broken on the street.

Had nearly fallen a day before.

Willie left baseball.

Frost went to his cabin, no more writing.

Taylor slumped into seclusion.

I check the coffee cup.

I get serious about stop, look, listen.

I fasten the helmet, check legs, focus ….

The signs are there ….

Eugene “Gene” Novogrodsky late February 2013

Author: Gene Novogrodsky

Eugene “Gene” Novogrodsky, a Brownsville resident for nearly three decades, writes North American border slices, from eastern Canada to central Mexico, and in between. He is one of the founders of the Narciso Martinez Cultural Arts Center Writers Forum in San Benito. He sometimes participates with the informal Resaca Writers Group in Brownsville. He prefers, however, to read to two or three attentive listeners – when asked!


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