Sunday, May 25, 2008

Poem of the Week #21

Cloud Reader

Remember when you were small—
before you read words—
you taught yourself to read clouds?

You’d lie on your back
for hours and never tire
of the stories the clouds told.

There was the one about
the dragon who became
a three-legged elephant

and another about
a thin, bearded man
who chased a fat lady

so far across the sky
that they became
a herd of buffalo

and then a fish
who leapt to his last breath
from a pinky purple sea.

You thought you’d grow up
to make a living at it—
reading clouds—not knowing

that cloud reading
is a thankless task
left only to children

and dreamers. Good days
those were, when reading clouds
was your bread and butter.

Lisa Vihos

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