The Farm by Nikolle Doolin

I remember when finding the fool’s gold
brought me joy
there in the old gravel pit
before the rains were caught and formed a pond,
which we skated upon in winter

there, life seemed free and easy
the air was fresh and filled our lungs with hope,
as we darted in and out of the woods
exploring nature and playing games

the old farmhouse was always at the
epicenter of our wanderings
from whence a billow of smoke from the chimney
signaled the way back

from places such as the unmarked graveyard
near the unpaved road
where father warned of falling into the boney laps of the dead
buried below our small feet

the image of grisly skeletons
reaching out to grab me in my mind
punctuated by the crackling noise of twigs
under the hooves of deer observing us unseen

great-grandmother would be baking a pecan pie inside
while the blue sky,
with its endless horizon at the top of the hill,
would encourage us to stay out as long as there was light

around the old New England farm
that long-lost sanctuary
the temple of my youth


Copyright © 2008 Nikolle Doolin

This poem first appeared in the Wilderness House Literary Review in 2009.  It next appeared in the anthology Wilderness House Literary Review – The Best of Volume 3 in 2009.

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