Bio Note: I am the East Region VP of the Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets, and I represent them on the Wisconsin Poet Laureate Commission. In 2018 I received the Lorine Neidecker Prize for Poetry from the Council for Wisconsin Writers. You can find more of my work on the New Verse News website and at www.wfop.org, or on my web site edwerstein.com
Sometimes Now Seems So Very Hard to Pin Down or, Pre-Cognitive Impairment
after Mike Kriesel
Arrows of time all point to an uncertain future. But what if there were a reverse memory, a pre- Cognition as flimsy and fickle as our dubious, Disintegrating remembrances, a universe where Every possible future lay before us shimmering Fuzzily ahead like asphalt in summer heat, Growing clearer as we approach, then disappearing as the Horizon puts up a new mirage awaiting us like Interstate oases which we always fly past, Just missing the ramp which is the “now” we seek? We Know that now is the key to living a mindful Life in the present, and that all our memories are Maybe-memories, false to a greater degree as we age, Nothing as verifiable as baseball statistics, that sport’s recorded Officialdom. Still, they’re somehow more concrete than the Possibilities lying ahead of us. So why Quit the present to pursue an uncertain future? Seems more un- Reasonable even than living in the past. Recollection is based on Something that, at least, used to be real, while Time-travel is a one-way ticket to an unknowable future. Understanding that might lead to an obsession with nostalgia, Visions of an idyllic, verifiable past where Ted Williams homers in his last at bat in Fenway Park, X-ing home plate for the last time, and discovering that You can go home again, at least the home you remember. Fade now to the Zzzzzzz…..of dreams.
Canon thistle blooms violet now one of my favorite late summer flowers. Back home on the farm thistles spelled trouble for me and my brother. If Dad saw one in the field on his way home from the Ford factory he’d close the pick-up door, hard. And look for us. What do you boys do all day?, he’d scold, his face purpling. Get those weeds out before they go to seed or you’ll have more to hoe next year. Let’s see a little less baseball and a little more work. Don’t you know thistles steal water from the crops?
©2020 Ed Werstein
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