SA (12-05-1952 / Somewhere under heaven, Georgia, USA)

Do You Remember Fireball Roberts?

Sometimes we connect;
unexpected moments of touching.
I think you never remember
the pain of a young girl who knew.
I remember. I still know.
My own mother looked away.

We sit quiet today.
Too much has happened for discussions.
I am seeing a day in my twelfth year.
It was a Thursday in July.
Nineteen, sixty-four.

I had written something just for you, Mama.
You put it aside. Read later.
Unread, it sat.
I threw it crumbled into the fireplace
a week later.

I remember.
It was the same day that race car driver died.
Who was he?
A dangerous name, an explosive ending.
Oh well. Leave it.
We are what we are.
Today, memories can sit quiet.

Neither of us has spoken;
I wonder where your thoughts are walking.
You stir suddenly and look me square.

You speak slowly, with an unsure voice;
'Do you remember Fireball Roberts? '

We connect.
Somewhere, in the shadows of my past,
A twelve year old girl has been seen,
forty-two years later.


© Shirley Alexander

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Langston Hughes

Dreams

Comments (1)

Sensitivity, it seems all young people want and need to be heard and understood. If we just hat the time and sensitivity to hear them. Good poem. Jimmer