Friday, March 19, 2010

Aimless Reading: The G's, Part 8 (Jimmie Gilliam Canfield)

Canfield, Jimmie Gilliam
Ain't No Bears Out Tonight

Found in a kitchen drawer, beneath a pile of greasy utensils, during a second visit to the house in which we currently reside and taken, because of our long-time friendship with the author, as a sign that we should buy it. I suppose that this should properly be filed under "C." However, I have never known the author as Canfield, which she shed from her name many years ago, only as Gilliam, thus the filing error.

Jimmie is an old time Buffalo poet and teacher and a long time friend of Just Buffalo Literary Center, where I work. She hails from Asheville North Carolina, where she still owns a small piece of property with two modest homes on the outskirts of town. One winter we rented the smaller of the two and spent the week between Christmas and New Year's with my mother and two brothers.

While we were there, seven feet of snow fell on Buffalo, so that when we drove back a few days later, all the highways getting into town were closed, so we had to find a path through some of the neighborhoods south of the city.

At the time, Lori had an SUV that was quite tall. The snow that had been piled on the side of the street was at least a foot higher than the car itself, so it felt as if we were driving through a giant snow maze. Eventually, we found an unguarded exit on the highway and drove through the plowed, but empty lanes back to our apartment.

from Ain't No Bears Out Tonight

cast as a child

in a milkweed meadow

child runs free
gun scene gone
black rock pain dropped

into an ocean
waves of sadness
sad waves sounding

a memory

I was loved/I love

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thank you for posting my mother's poem. Jill