Submitted Date 10/04/2019

Back to the Future

-- This is one poem, from my autobiographical series of poems, that I posted here at WriteSpike. Go to my Stories section for others. They are in chronological order. --

Countdown for blastoff... X minus five, four, three, two, X minus one... Fire!
These are stories of the future; adventures in which you'll live in a million could-be years
on a thousand may-be worlds.

~ Opening narration, "X Minus One" ~
A sci-fi radio program that I listened to every week from age 11-14

Do I wish things had been different?
do I wish I had not lived
in the wake of turmoil
that seemed to follow my life?


my wish list:
an older brother not mentally ill
a mother less vindictive
a father not wounded
a love with fewer tears, fewer shadows
and of course
recognition for my art
so I didn't have to struggle to pay the bills

I have written the book I was born to write
explored a new art form I had a part in discovering
married the love of my life

change one thing in your past
and you may be changing
a lot of other things as well

I am reminded of the
X Minus One radio story
in which a time-traveling tourist
goes back a hundred million years
to a Jurassic Park kind of place
and is given one instruction
"Stay on the special walkway.
Don't touch anything.
Just look."

enthralled by the prehistoric plants
he walks along until -
without thinking -
he grabs a leaf
puts it in his pocket
and then forgets about it

coming back to his own time, however,
he gets confused -
some streets have different names
a building is gone and instead
a new skyscraper is on the horizon

when he drives home
his ranch style house
is turned at an angle

and his wife and children
don't recognize him

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