1. Hoop Dreams
Come on, Granddaddy, he calls, age seven,
Dribbling the ball on the deck,
Play some D.
Shoulders that have seen better days
Struggle to get hands up on defense.
I no longer conspire to let him win.
He breezes by for a lay-up,
A moment I want to think
He will recall when his sons and grandsons,
Also North Carolina boys,
Begin to bounce a ball.
2. The Bridge
To reach our house at Golden Pines
You go across a bridge,
The last bridge, my friend, age 80, calls it.
Don’t say that, I tell him,
Blood pumping, pulsing
Against skin turned to paper by the years.
For it had seemed to me,
Until not long ago, that
We might be exempt
From certain statistical probabilities
And live forever.
“November Songs” originally appeared in Homestead Review.
About Robert Demaree
Robert Demaree, a retired educator, is the author of four collections of poems, including Mileposts (2009), published by Beech River Books. He has had over 550 poems published in 125 periodicals, including The Aurorean, Avocet, Cold Mountain Review, Foliate Oak, Louisiana Review, Louisville Review, MediaVirus, miller’s pond, Schuylkill Valley Journal, Tipton Poetry Journal and in the 2008 and 2010 editions of The Poets’ Guide to New Hampshire. He lives in Wolfeboro, N.H. and Burlington, N.C.