a poetry e-zine










Richard Dinges
Empty Pockets
Old men remember
no things.  Gnarled fingers
pull lint and grime
from empty pockets.
They see a pretty face,
white bright teeth.
Soft hair whispers
into unhearing tinnitus,
waves into a blurred
myopic vision.
Names vanished long
ago, now a place holder,
grasp at tattered
remnants of who she
was, sister, mother,
girlfriend, wife,
a moment lost,
turned to dust,
worth one more smile.

Breath lives in
a rasp, a wheeze,
a honking snort.
To locate the sound,
left, right, within,
becomes a last
obsession, that steady
wind, a soft whisper
or bass command,
or tentative question,
accompanied by a throb,
drum muscle pulse.
Final airs sound
a musical annotation
that raises memories
of a dark beginning
that burst into light
in another room.

Richard Dinges, Jr.  has an MA in literary studies from University of Iowa, and after many years, is no longer managing business systems at an insurance company.  Richard has had poems accepted for publication at Homestead Review, Sandy River Review, Avalon, Poem, and Icon.


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