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Looking Back and Looking Now

I went down to the memory lane
And walked alone along the hazy trail
I saw my boyhood and the dogs I owned
And the field down the street where I played ball
On hot summer days with my friends

I walked into my grandparent’s house
The little place a few blocks away
Where love reigned and the hugs would never end
And I felt a worth I’ve not since known

I saw the art class in junior high
Where I built a sculpture out of tiles
A cathedral with a golden steeple
That my mom kept for years in our home

I waved at the girl I kissed under the bleachers
At the football game in the high school stadium
And she smiled at me like she did long ago
And I remembered how sweet life was
How easy the days all seemed to flow

I drove my first car to the Dairy Queen
And sat and watched the kids all come and go
Their laughter was real and their faces beamed
With innocence that now has disappeared
From the faces of so many kids I know

I sat in church and heard the old hymns being sung
And everything seemed genuine and everyone sincere
And the Cross on the Communion Table was not a scary thing
But radiated something kind that made me think that God was love
That Jesus died there not in shame and not for sins and not for heaven
But as a place where love went the distance and was not defeated by hate

I visited the library where I cast my first vote when I was 21
And I remember it seemed a sacred thing I barely understood
But I never saw an angry face or heard anyone yell or curse
People voted quietly and walked away back to the simple lives we all lived

The old baseball lot is a strip mall now
And my grandparents have long since left this earth
And my cathedral is gone along with Mom and Dad
And the girl I kissed at the high school game

The Dairy Queen is a Dollar Store
And the church a bank on a busy street
And no one waves anymore or smiles when they meet
And voting is a battle and a war and a divisive thing
And the nation is stiff and cold and brittle and angry
And there is little that holds us together or keeps us one
We have surrendered substance and heart for entertainment
And even that is a sour thing we all abhor

And I wonder about years from now
What will be and what others will say
About who we were and what we did
And how we talked and how we lived

© 2016 Timothy Moody

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