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  Michael Estabrook
   
     
I feel like Mr. Watts today
 
I’m at home recovering from a hernia
operation. I can’t bend
or drive or do anything fast
or lift anything. I can barely walk.
The medicine I’m taking
has left my mind dull and thudding.
I sit in my bathrobe,
pajamas and slippers, looking out
the front window
at the lawn coming in green,
at the flowers and the squirrels,
deft as mountain goats,
and at the neighborhood cars
drifting by like boats in the rain.
I think of Mr. Watts
who lived across the street
from us back on Northfield Avenue
when I was a boy.
He had cancer, and from the street
you could see him sitting there
in his bedroom window all day long
drinking beer and watching
the world going by outside.
Every time I would go out
in the yard I knew
good old Mr. Watts would be there
watching me from behind
the bright white curtains
beer can clutched
in his fist or resting on
the windowsill, waiting.  I suppose
that’s as good a way to go as any.

 


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