Beyond Repair

O how our love burned bright. Sometimes
it burned with a soft glow. At other times,
it simply smoldered. It had its moments.

Then I caught myself. I was thinking that
it was better than it really was. Our love
was like a worn out wall switch.

Click on, click off, click on, click off,
on, off, on, off, on, off.
And one day, the switch didn’t work at all.
It was beyond repair.

Like a filament in a bulb, our love burned
with an intense savage fizzle, then died.

Copyright © 2013 Alan L. Slaff, selected from
“The Boy in the Mirror (2nd Edition)”

Time and Tears

Although I am locked into a life without
you, I feel you behind my eyes.
I feel you deep down inside where no one
else has been.

I sense the softness of your skin, even though
we never touched beyond a parting embrace.
I can still feel your eyes finding mine.

We stared in silence because we would no
longer share long walks, chats, and late night
laughter. And crying. Then came the final hug.

Our lingering stare said what couldn’t be said.
Our silence screamed to know all the things
we will never know together.

To this day, my memory is full of you, even
though we shared only time and tears.

Copyright © 2013 Alan L. Slaff, selected from
“The Boy in the Mirror (2nd Edition)”

Shadows in Life

all things are forgotten
by humankind
by time
by design

except for the memories
of war
of abuse
of pain
of suffering

for they are our own
they made us who we are
maybe not who we thought
we wanted to be

and what of the other memories
of joy
of love
of peace
et cetera

they cast light on the shadows
in life with hope for the life
to come

just like the knowledge of God
cannot be listed as a memory

For Some

I watched a sailboat
trying to make its way
across the lake.
My book was open,
but I hadn’t turned a page.
Too tired; too hot.

I checked on the sailboat.
It seemed to be
where it was before.
No breeze.
Here or out there.
Stifling in this heat.

The quiet was shattered
by the high whine
of speed boats that came
and went with or without
skiers in tow.
They buzzed by often
enough to be annoying.

That is peace for some.

I belong to the Lord;
that is my peace.

Unfortunately for some,
their summer is joyous
only because
it follows winter.

Copyright © 2013 Alan L. Slaff, selected from
“The Boy in the Mirror (2nd Edition)”

To Reading

I scratched my beard while I reached
for a book high on a shelf. My thoughts
drifted to the bookcase in my room
when I was a young boy.

It was two shelves high made out of
thin plywood, painted a glossy gray.
The shelves were filled with Tom
Swift Jr. and the Hardy Boys. And a
lot of other important stuff, too.

New books have that special smell.
National Geographic smells great, too.
To fan the pages of a new book is
titillating to be sure.

In those pages, time and time again,
I have loved and been loved. Be gentle
with that book!

A torn page is like a broken heart; you
can patch it up, but it is never the same
again. Books give and give. They’re
not like people.

Copyright © 2013 Alan L. Slaff, selected from
“The Boy in the Mirror (2nd Edition)”