Elizabeth Poreba

Self Help

For the retired and/or retiring, a personal exploration claiming to be a self-help manual, a poet's musings on the experience of no longer having much to do and being disinclined by shyness to join a book club.

Life could become a summer afternoon, a slow swim in a warm lake. I could become another backyard roustabout, part of the greedy gang eying the vegetable garden. The larcenous woodchuck returns. We exchange a long gaze but he gives no clue of what to do next.

The poems ponder various ways to adapt to unaccustomed leisure--napping, complaining, gardening, volunteering, and so on. Observing time's curious way of intermittently sprinting then lollygagging, and understanding more clearly every day that time doesn't exist anyway, the poet relishes moments, which are … liable to be caught
like a leaf in the eddy of a brook, lodged
only long enough to look,

and which become her subjects.
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