The Clerestory Podcast S1 E25

The Oklahoma Tenant Farmer and Me
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Came on my bike, hot in the
August sun and beaten down
by what life had been dolloping out to me
in big spoonfuls.  Came aimless
to a light-harshened clearing, shadow-stitched 
at its edges.  Came stupidly, blind,
beast seeking water in a season
when it knows watercourses 
all are dry.


So you happen on some weird spot
you never saw before, though 
(you remind yourself), 
you weren't, as usual, 
looking.  But here
it is.  Some church-somebody's idea
for Sunday school ("Children should be
kept active…").  Or the recovery group, since
New Age crap may work for those 
desperate zombies.  Or maybe just 
retired people wanting something to do.  
So whoever it was laid out
hot dim stones in an ever-closing
Must've decided just to leave
that little olive tree at the center.  
Or hell, maybe took
a timid little vote.


Well, you can see from the above 
what I was hauling there with me.
But I walked the sun-beaten spiral 
in hot dust smell anyway.  Somewhere 
along the dumb little path, my feet 
took up a rhythm.  By the time I made
the center, I'd become
stunned worshiper of the blazing 
egg-oval caught in 
the olive's pale-leaved crown.

Tim J. Myers is a writer, songwriter, storyteller, visual artist, and senior lecturer at Santa Clara University. His children’s books have won recognition from the New York Times, NPR, and the Smithsonian, with 16 out and more coming. He’s published over 140 poems, won a first prize in a poetry contest judged by John Updike, has five books of adult poetry out, published a nonfiction book on fatherhood, and won a major prize in science fiction. He also won the West Coast Songwriters Saratoga Chapter Song of the Year and the 2012 SCBWI Magazine Merit Award for Fiction. Facebook: TimJMyers1; Twitter: @TMyersStorySong; Instagram: @tmyersstorysong

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