the first time

the first time i noticed
i wasn’t from here
was before heaven
ever hurt anyone,
and the sun’s
music didn’t
have to break
through dark land
just to get attention

i understood filtered
fingers plucked
our hearts up one
ray at a time
through native
free-range animal clouds
who liked to travel
with us on the way back
from Milford lake

i felt God,
or an angel,
or something I didn’t know
pulling my head
out of the Bronco window
in the heartland of it all
while Cheryl sprinkled
two drops of vanilla
into our Pepsi cans,


for Real Toads


31 thoughts on “the first time

  1. I really like how this poem begins with the ethereal and ends in a very real moment for the narrator. Great juxtaposition! Thanks for posting to the out of standard!

  2. There is something in this poem that brings to mind one of my favorite songs, Let’s Take a Drive by Christian Kane – not the same words but the same feeling. I really like the last stanza. I had a vanilla Coke a couple of weeks ago. Had it mixed for me at an old school drug store. I truly enjoyed this poem.

  3. Wow, this is the light side of the same idea I wrote a poem called “The Succubus Athena” about, but mine came at it from a much darker side. And mine didn’t have any vanilla Pepsi in it, making yours vastly superior. Hey, I’m a lover of weird things like lime diet Coke and cherry Coke and such like.

  4. Free-range animal clouds and Milford Lake…typing with tears in my eyes. Sometimes I forget that I love where I live. I love that you used to live here, too.
    This was absolutely beautiful – your writing always is. xo

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