>still life portrait


He frowns at them as if
they were whiny patients
in an orthopedics’ waiting room,
masking their hopeful glances
each time a door opens:

the stoved-up pen, two weeks
of mail and the duct-taped T V
remote sitting on the kitchen table,
where he no longer spends any time
eating steak and baked potatoes.

Now it’s Hot Pockets with this week’s beer
special from the Kum n Go gas station
down the hill and around
the corner from where she’d ride
the bike they stored in the kitchen,
next to the table where she left
the note underneath the pen
now broken.

Previously published in Avatar Review.   Photo by William O’Keefe (my father).


About redmitten

author of Cracking Geodes Open, Making Good Use of August, and The Peppermint Bottle. poetry editor for IthacaLit. website: https://toomuchaugust.wordpress.com

6 responses to “>still life portrait

  1. >This one makes for a lonely, grey portrait of a life once lived/loved. The photo is perfect.

  2. >stunning stunning photograph…montana eh? a place i have always wanted to travel through. now THAT's Big Sky Country. thank you for visiting mine! lovely to have found yours too! x j

  3. >I just love that photo. The poem had a melancholy feel to it and the two really complimented each other.Maggie XNuts in May

  4. >This poem works really well to tell a story, and the title is perfect. The duct taped TV remote, the broken pen- to me, these details extend the story, and I can visualize what the "still life" reveals. Somehow, I can picture him, too, unshaven.

  5. >A melancholy tale, told simply like a song. I am glad for the chance to become acquainted with your writing. Thank you…and for the photo.

  6. >kerry,oy, once lived/once loved. very poetic of you.janelle,good to find you here! we both live in places the other would like to experience. the photo is one my father took some years ago. now i can no longer remember which came first, the poem or the photo.maggie may,what we experience by way of shadows intrigues me. when i write, i try to have shadows in my poetry as well.annie,you know what? "unshaven" would be a good title as well. good to hear from you!marylinn,thank you, actually.

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