Real Poetry

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Archive for the tag “Dear Abby”

Naomi Shihab Nye – “Alive”

Hey everyone out there,

Alright, I know this poem of the week is a little delayed, but for those who missed the tweet I put out, I wasn’t feeling well when I usually write up that post, so I decided to delay it to today. Anyway, this poem comes from Naomi Shihab Nye, a poet who I had the distinct pleasure of meeting and hearing read from the book I have of hers: Transfer.

I feel like a few of the poems I’ve posted lately have had a bit of a sad undercurrent to them, so I thought I’d liven things up a bit with this one. It makes me smile to read and I can recall hearing this one read by Naomi. I hope you all enjoy.

Alive

Dear Abby, said someone from Oregon,
I am having trouble with my boyfriend’s attachment
to an ancient gallon of milk still full
in his refrigerator. I told him it’s me or the milk,
is this unreasonable? Dear Carolyn,
my brother won’t speak to me
because fifty years ago I whispered
a monkey would kidnap him in the night
to take him back to his true family
but he should have known it was a joke
when it didn’t happen, don’t you think?
Dear Board of Education, no one will ever
remember a test. Repeat. Stories,
poems, projects, experiments,
mischief, yes, but never a test.
Dear Dog Behind the Fence, you really need
to calm down now. You have been barking every time
I walk to the compost for two years
and I have not robbed your house. Relax.
When I asked the man on the other side
if you bothered him too, he smiled and said no,
he makes me feel less alone. Should I be more
worried about the dog or the man?

– Naomi Shihab Nye

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