(Originally published on Medium.com October 10, 2019)
After nearly two decades I decided to reread old poems I’d written as an undergrad at Boise State University. The three poems I’m proudest of are the ones which were published in cold-drill 1999 sponsored by the English Dept. The focus of these three poems happened to be people who were significant in my life, people who helped and still help me get through turbulent times.
When I was sixteen, my grandmother invited me to stay with her in her home so that I could continue to attend school with my friends. Those few years were the best years of my life. What tickled me the most was that she and I shared a love for books and a desire to write. She was taking a writing correspondence course and she didn’t mind sharing her new knowledge with me. I was so proud of her when one of her essays was published in a major magazine.
The second person who had a fortuitous impact on me was a classmate turned friend I met as a sophomore. I remember she sat in the seat in front of me in math class and wheeled around to rest her elbow on my desk and with a big smile introduced herself. Unlike me she wasn’t shy. I don’t know how I would have gotten through math class without her. She was the Math Wiz and I was the English Nerd. The last time I saw her we spent a gorgeous afternoon canoeing on the St. Croix river. That day was the inspiration for one of my poems published in cold-drill.
The other significant person in my life is my longtime friend. We have been partners/friends since 1997. He is a good and kind man. We have been through some tough times together and continue to support each other. Even though our relationship has changed, we are still very close and share a love for the puppy I bought seven years ago. She is no longer a puppy, but since she’s only ten pounds many people mistake her for one. We both are her devoted personal assistants and go out of our way to make her happy. She has more toys and beds than my kids did when they were young. She’s spoiled because she’s a super star and so damned cute.