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a poem of present memory
by roger striffler

It remains.
Standing firmly. Quietly.
Amid the beach grass and bramble.

Boards cling tightly to frames once filled by lovers
gazing out over golden evening waters. The wind which lifted bright curtains and light summer dresses now tugs at scales and ribbons of paint,
peeling away the skin of the sleeping giant.

The path is long neglected,
overgrown with briars and branches,
its wooden steps swallowed by the hillside,
Yet a way may still be found by those who are not blind to the magic.
Those who feel the pull and are drawn
by the silent invitation to dream.

Upwards it leads.
Winding between rock and brush,
over piercing glass,
through the stinging bite of the briar's thorn.
Well hidden, it wanders around the cliff face and up
to the porch - empty now of summer breezes and gaily lit party lights; of strolling couples and laughing children.

On then, to the big bay windows, where a poorly placed nail yields an unexpected treat
- a gap just large enough to peer through -
where a visitor,
face pressed against the boards,
might view with one eye the grand dining room
and imagine the splendor and finery of another time.
Dust and plaster lie where crisp, starched waiters bustled
to the clinking of crystal glasses
in the soft glow of candlelight.

Urged on by curiosity or imagination, the brave may find the broken door on the north side and venture within
to wander among the rooms,
searching for clues,
creating wonderful stories of the inhabitants long gone.

to climb
heart abeat with every groaning step,
to the widow's walk,
to gaze out onto the quiet bay below
and be entranced by the shimmering sunlight
and soft rhythm of the sea.

And then to return.
To the path.
To the road.
To the present.

It remains.
Long after.
Not a building, but the ghost of another time.

I have seen bittersweet.
It is an old house
on a hill
by the sea.


See that job title? Check it out: "Spy". How cool is that? I know, you're probably wondering what it means to be a spy for an international organization like Intrepid Media, huh? Well I'd love to tell you, but I can't. It's all part of the spy game, baby.

more about roger striffler


bewitched, bothered, and be-mused
finders keepers? i wish!
by roger striffler
topic: writing
published: 5.26.00

the scariest book i own
and it isn't stephen king
by roger striffler
topic: writing
published: 3.19.00


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