Two Stories About the Same Pond

– By Gary Clark


Looking back, I’m not sure it can be made clear

how much November has meant to me over the years.

One time it meant I could never come home,

another that the thrushes were gone; today it meant

I still love it the way the spires of fir still pierce

the ugliness from inside me and open my eyes to tomorrow,

again, to feel good and sure about things.

One time I had a broth so good I woke up beside our pond

and saw two selves, both pretty decent guys,

but both with habits that bothered other people terribly

(especially those who cared for me the most).

It was cold down there and you guessed it, it was

November again, where all the sweetest distance takes place.

I wanted a sandwich so bad and the next day,

with Gordon, we split one down in the red chairs.

We heard the mailman come and the little crow fly far away.

We had each come down to the water to be different,

one of us with a sandwich, one with ideas for new mechanical things

made of beautiful material, both with something

to prove, both in need of the soothing sun.

Then I yelled hard at someone who didn’t deserve it.

It was quiet then like you wouldn’t believe.

We were both there together, Gordon and I, an entire valley

of people finding new ways to live together.