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Larry Kimmel - Collected Poems Online




The Latch


With its miniature rock gardens, grape arbor, and roses (roses 
everywhere, like a child's experiment with rouge); with its neatly 
trimmed grass along the flagstone walks; with its birdbath 
(strategically placed, as was its willow tree)—the backyard had 
all the aura of a formal garden.  In that lawn (just large enough 
to frame a family portrait), hemmed in by a wire fence disguised 
with honeysuckle vines and marigolds, one somehow achieved 
a sense of privacy; even a sense of seclusion from the nearby 
neighbors. While outside, a narrow broken alley ran between two 
rows of other backyard lawns.  All this (after all these years), like 
the fragments of a dream at noontime. Except for the latch. 
Substantial as a candy stuck in the throat, the latch remains in 
mind, as if I'd just stepped out of that microcosmic Eden into the 
narrow alleyway this early morning, closing the gate behind me 
with a click!; closing the gate behind me with all that is before 
time began locked! in a single syllable, for all time.

               in a shaded spot
               the ruins
               of a sundial


Copyright © 2005 by Larry Kimmel