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Two Poems by Rip Underwood

What Love Is
So many natural things
escape our vows
I had to wake you
with this one, to show
how winter squat down
with his frost nib pen
and feathered our windows
in crosshatch lines; knowing yet
their watery fate – O, dear,
isn’t it lonely in a hut
when these shows are unshared?
And you were kind, waking,
not to say your dream windows
had been the better ones:
full of mimosa calligraphy
and curl-eaved pagodas…


The Persistence of Romance
I had to go back
to where you’d arrived that day.
Sad, sad stationhouse, now serving
only a few feet of snipped rails.
There were ruts in the earth floor
where the old pipes ran.
Casements were blown in
or pried away; benches
lay in matchstick chaos,
and a smell of leather and grease
made me remember the fairgrounds
of my youth…receding youth…
long past youth… till by some miracle
I remembered how your daisy
colored hair flowed
out the slid-back window
of that ancient sleeper, how it
flecked in the sunlight
as you came to a stop, and there
at the old ticket window a strand
of it blown loose still lay anchored
in a crevice of rotting wood!
It was yours, I’m pretty sure.
It smelled of candy apples.
Rip Underwood

Rip Underwood has owned a dental lab for many years, along with volunteering, but has retired to devote his energies to finding outlets for his poetry. He wishes to explore a more inward artistic journey and see if the work he’s accumulated has a place in the world.

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