There had been an implied promise
in that loaded down jeep, u-haul
on the hitch, Frampton on the 8-Track.

The promise of success in the bustle
of the world. The promise of family,
home and prosperity. The promise
of health and happiness.

Expectations high as youth disappears
in the mirror and the elocution of the tires
on the road melds with the rant of the guitar.

Third class missed in a week, too tired
to move, no ability to focus, no desire
for coarse lessons from pompous professors.

He liked her smile, her mysterious
attitude, the flirtatious promise of a
salacious fling. The spoon was a surprise,
but her look overcame his fear.

No more school that semester, failed.
Failed to show at work, failed to call family.
All he remembered later was the rancid
taste of the froth in his mouth when
he was found in an alley.

The expected admonishments did
not arrive with his father. He hugged
him quietly then loaded the car.

Silent, he peered out the passenger
window as his dad turned the car
homeward, like current through a diode
it was the only way to go,

towards a promise of peace and second
chances. He realized as he nodded off
that sometimes dreams take time to coagulate.

English: mihai, grecu, coagulate

English: mihai, grecu, coagulate (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Kellie Elmore offers up a challenging word bank for her Free Write Friday.


Filed under Poetry, Poetry - Prompts

8 responses to “Promises

  1. Another brilliant entry for this week’s challenge. Brilliantly done. The line ‘The expected admonishments did not arrive with his father.’ says so much about both characters. This actually made me a bit tearful – though it’s far removed from my own experience. What a great story, and lesson!

  2. Leo

    A short story in just a few stanzas! Very well done, as usual.

  3. You made these words just disappear into the piece Mark!! Excellent writing and I must say the first section impresses so much happening there in so few words. Very nice!

  4. Brilliant story, Mark. So much to think about, and even more to like: your choice of words, I mean/

  5. This poem had language that flowed, spun, and resounded. Just beautiful work, Mark.

  6. Mark, I envy your talent! I cannot even express my awe for your work. Your weaving of fragmented scenes and characters are like fine lines in a Monet. That is how I see your words, pure art. Rich and alive with colorful depths that demand attention! Love it!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Some of what I write is true, some is fiction; most is merely possibility.

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