Thoughts of my father at the Brooklyn Museum by linda lerner

Two Poems by Linda Lerner

Thoughts of My Father at the Brooklyn Museum
stumbling onto a road war- prisoners walked
in 19th century Russia in my attempt to escape
from a nine-month imprisonment in 2020 led me
from dark clouded volcanic scenes erupting
to a snow blinding blizzard in my father’s birth place…
the cold seeped into me as I stood transfixed
before moving on to where
a group of prisoners huddled together
in a refuge of sorts, snow cascading down
from a broken skylight and
thought of my father at 17 forced
to join a group of youths marching
on a similar road a century later
to escape from Pogroms,
that universal cold I carried
home with me, passing blocks of people
shivering outside café’s & restaurants
leaving warm apartments to sit here
a safe distance apart in huddling
proximity of others, I now joined
That Plane I’m Not On
and sucked out of when a window
I’m leaning against gives, has me
frantically trying to grab hold
of what isn’t there, till spotting
a man in the distance, a woman who seems
to be with him, and curious about
who they are, hoping they might help me
gain my bearings, just as they vanish
and I’m back where I was;
things start to look up when I see
part of a street and try landing on it
but turns out to be someone’s
memory of one, don’t know who
that person is or how they got there
isn’t a real street anyway like
those ideas of things floating by
my mind’s reach isn’t fast enough
to catch and worn out from trying,
put down this novel I’ve been reading
to get off that plane I never got on
in the first place
Linda Lerner, author of 17 collections. Her poems currently appeared in Maintenant, Patersson Literary Review, Gargoyle, Chiron Review, Free State Review and Rat’s Ass Review among others.