I remember a time when I didn’t have to remember a time…

I remember a time when I
didn’t have to remember a time

When butter only came in sticks.
And the trash men came every morning
When a Chevy was just a Chevy…
And my dad parked it for free
and the cops would give us a warning

Memories when freedom smelled like barbecue
and my fingers tasted like Old Bay
we crunched corn on the cob
and sat with lit faces beneath fireworks,
not watching, waiting, miles away

When it wasn’t who had the bigger yard,
but which yards could be conjoined to make
the biggest football field
and our parents voices,
not cell phones, called us
to gather around the supper meals

I remember when
lawyers were great
because we hardly ever needed them
When we feared dying more than being poor
When we called them jobs,
not income back then.

I remember when an endless ringing phone
or even a haunting busy tone
required no further investigation…
because at least you knew
she was … home

…When love meant you don’t have to stop looking,
“just keep looking at me.”
Because romantic love didn’t grow in diversions
like weeds in fertile soils of commiseration
I remember you looking at me

I remember when you could hear me
draw a tranquil breath
between each  spoken rhyme
…rather than me listening alone
to memories tapped
into liquid –
crystal –
diode –
lines.

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