Take Heart: A Conversation in Poetry: The Present
Edited and introduced by Wesley McNair, Maine Poet Laureate
Today Bruce Guernsey of Bethel recalls the phone he once bought for his aging mother, whose experience with it, he writes, was for him both comic and “immensely poignant.”
The Present by Bruce Guernsey
For her birthday that year I bought my mother one of those portable phones, a new kind you could carry all over the house so she wouldn’t be alone anywhere anymore,except she couldn’t remember where she left it most of the time those days and hurried in her slippers from one room to the next only to hear it ringing somewhere down the halland opened the front door to no one there or still on the phone when she finally found it where she never put it, the house getting bigger as she got smallerbut no less busy than she was before with us six kids and my father at work, or war— that new phone like having us still around, calling from somewhere, upstairs or down.
Take Heart: A Conversation in Poetry is produced in collaboration with the Maine Writers & Publishers Alliance. Poem copyright © 2012 Bruce Guernsey. Reprinted from From Rain: Poems, 1970-2010, Ecco Qua Press, 2012, by permission of Bruce Guernsey. Questions about submitting to Take Heart may be directed to Gibson Fay-LeBlanc, Special Consultant to the Maine Poet Laureate, at email@example.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.