Take Heart: A Conversation in Poetry: October Moon

Edited and introduced by Wesley McNair, Maine Poet Laureate

Today, Claire Hersom of Winthrop offers a glimpse of two people who once sat under the moonlight in a small town, entranced by each other. ?It was impossible not to kiss,? she writes. ?We had no choice.?

October Moon by Claire Hersom

I see you every so often;
at the grade school parking lot
the House of Pizza
driving down by the lake near the Legion.
You have a painter cap on,
your expression a half smile,
and if I close my eyes, I can
feel your mouth kissing mine
under the October moon,
the mill stream steady beside us,
me, hungry to pour life back into 
a splintered heart.
Under red and gold branches,
windows of the town dark,
we held hands, hip to hip, and kissed
until the world lost its balance.
Twenty years later, you pass me in a car,
your wife and your daughter talking,
moving a hand, brushing hair from a brow
or reaching forward. One hand on the wheel
lifts a hello in my direction.
We smile.

Take Heart: A Conversation in Poetry is produced in collaboration with the Maine Writers & Publishers Alliance. Poem copyright © 2008 Claire Hersom. Reprinted from Drowning: A Poetic Memoir, Moon Pie Press, 2008, by permission of Claire Hersom. Questions about submitting to Take Heart may be directed to Gibson Fay-LeBlanc, Special Consultant to the Maine Poet Laureate, at mainepoetlaureate@gmail.com or 207-228-8263. Take Heart: Poems from Maine, an anthology collecting the first two years of this column, is now available from Down East Books.