Metal Detector Man

Eau Claire looks good

but shaggy, like Jason Segel

or some other not quite A list actor needing a shave

and a few days without beer,

the grass is just now green

and the University is torn up,

the Sprites statue in an unfamiliar place

or maybe I just don’t remember where

it was, it’s been 25 years after all, and

my bike and I drift through Putnam park

and along the river behind Water Street where

the Camaraderie was, where we let our parents

take us to dinner

I ride by the three houses I lived in,

Chippewa, Union, Niagara streets, staring at

the windows of the rooms where I slept, trying

to see if something of who I was

before I finally decided, is left behind –

and here now Carson Park, where we tailgated,

and that’s where I see the metal detector man

slowly swinging the pole with its great disc eye

in neverending arcs, Cs across the uneven grass

looking for lost coins, for

anything forsaken of value

that he might collect and add to his pile,

to add to who he is,

while I have been looking up at windows

for any clues that I left behind

to tell me why I am

who I’ve become.


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