Saturday, November 3, 2018

bowling and aging

the kid within, the old impinges

I haven’t bowled for years.
really bowled? not for decades,
my head knows what to do,
but my body won’t move
with the flexibility it used to exhibit,
that loose devil-may-care abandon
my middle school students exhibit, 
most of them don’t live a secret of bowling,
at least my “secret,” 
that economy of movement,
of repetition, of precision,
but they are fluid,
my first two frames are spares,
many frames aren’t that good,
no strikes,
my movements careful, halting, staccato,
my left hand on my left knee
as I release the ball,
the bowling ball often goes close to where I aimed it,
but increasingly I’m off, just a bit,
that the alley makes larger and larger
as the pins come nearer,

I feel so lucky with all I can still do,
wherever my mind and my heart
can find the right opportunity to express themselves,
I can be still fine:
there for my students,
there for my wife,
there for my poetry, 
there for my photography,

bowling today reminds me that the operator within can still feel young
until the body without realizes we’re not in Kansas any more.

by Henry H. Walker
November 2, ‘18

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