EPIC Poetry Group: Poet’s Corner — For the Faces I Will Never See, Owl Love, Childhood Memories

Here is the latest installment of Poet’s Corner, presented by the Edmonds-based EPIC Poetry Group.

For the Faces I Will Never See

Christmas 2020

Long stretches of handling the hooks*
with rhythmic certainty
seamlessly moving forward on a row
occasionally looking up at a movie
seen before many times
(knowing which scene is coming)
sometimes losing track
of the sequencing cadence
or noticing the row does not look right,
counting, counting, ripping out,
saying a word not safe for work,
re-reading instructions
then back on track,
finishing the main pattern
and refining the border—
the final step—until
done at last!

For the faces I will never see,
you bundled newborns in other arms,
my love goes out to you.
I imagine my yarn
chucked against your chin,
but that is where my story ends.
Wear it well
and pay it forward
for children of your own
if you can.


Dave Baldwin

~ ~ ~ ~

Owl Love

Sometimes on my morning run,
I hear the call and response
of two owls.
They move around,
never in the same place twice,
but I know who they are
because the smaller of the two
is one white note higher
on the keyboard,
and each has a pitch
always the same.
No one owl initiates the call
every time.
They take turns.
The 2-hoot call is followed
by a two-Mississippi wait
for the 2-hoot response,
then they take 15 seconds
to think about it
before the next exchange.
I imagine both
are saying the same thing:
“I am yours.
I am here for you.”

Dave Baldwin

~ ~ ~ ~

Childhood Memories

Memories of my childhood
are hopelessly corrupt.
Facts are elusive.
The core event may stay the same,
protruding like a stone
in a turquoise tidal pool,
but ancillary facts appear,
disappear, reappear,
and shape-shift over time.

Facts are fleeting,
but feelings are forever
and absolutely incorruptible.
Memories are not unlike
the garden-variety dream
where the main takeaway
is not the inscrutable plot,
but the emotion I am feeling
when I awake.

Dave Baldwin

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Dave Baldwin retired in 2017 from the Walt Disney Company after more than 40 years as a technical writer and editor. He lives in Lake Stevens.

  1. Well done, Dave! I especially relate to the line in “Childhood Memories” where you say “ancillary facts appear,
    disappear, reappear, and shape-shift over time.” That kind of recycling of thought can create new opportunities for growth and pondering. As a fellow EPIC Poet, please know that your work always gives me pause to think and be grateful. Blessings to you as you continue your writing journey!

  2. What a comfort to read your words with the voice in my head learning the ebb and flow of each line and space.
    Still it takes me several tries sometimes, to feel the emotion triggered by the thought.
    This is what I love about poetry.

    Would you consider a reading? Could we push “play” and hear you utter the words?
    Or perhaps come and sit at hearing distance of your word-gift
    expressing God’s intention for our receiving hearts?
    In Gratitude,.

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