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Alignment
by
Joseph Robert Mills


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Because the road to the daycare goes east,

on spring mornings we drive towards the sun

along a corridor of flowering dogwoods,

and it may be the illuminated white petals,

the second coffee I had before we left,

or Pink doing a Steve Miller song, the one

from Happy Feet that made me realize

she has a great voice, but suddenly I’m close

to tears.  I have to lock my elbows to keep

the van on the road.  Then I start laughing

because of how difficult it would be to explain

I drove into a tree after being overwhelmed

by the enigmatic beauty of this world. 

From the backseat, my son asks, “Daddy,

What’s wrong?” and when I say, “Nothing,

I’m just happy,” he claps, “I’m happy too!”

 

From Love and Other Collisions (Press 53, 2010).
Used with the author's permission.

 

Purchase a framed print of this poem.

Joe Mills is a faculty member at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts, where he holds the Susan Burress Wall Distinguished Professorship in the Humanities. He is also Poet-in-Residence at Salem College. Joe's published work includes four volumes of poetry, fiction, drama, criticism and, with his wife, Danielle Tarmey, he cowrote A Guide to North Carolina?s Wineries. Says Joe, "Although I believe my written work is getting better as I age, I still can?t master bar chords on the guitar." Enjoy his blog, "Icing and Ink," and learn more about him at www.josephrobertmills.com.

 


New comments are closed for now.
TTHamlin:
This made me smile. I love moments like this!
Posted 04/08/2013 09:32 AM
KarenPQ:
Joseph, Gosh that was a great story, one I will remember and repeat to others. Now I've got to look up the Steve Miller/Pink song and have a listen. You've put a smile upon my face today. Thanks.
Posted 04/04/2013 07:49 AM
paradea:
Thank you for this poem!
Posted 04/02/2013 08:00 AM
transitions:
A wonderful happy start to the month; thank you ~ Judy
Posted 04/01/2013 04:05 PM
Jo:
A moment of wholeness. Beautiful poem.
Posted 04/01/2013 12:40 PM
tannerlynne:
I love it! I'm happy too.
Posted 04/01/2013 12:24 PM
rcstewart3:
Ahhhh!
Posted 04/01/2013 11:55 AM
Glen Sorestad:
What a fine read to start the day -- and Poetry Month. Thanks for this, Joe.
Posted 04/01/2013 10:01 AM
Joe Sottile:
I am happy too, with this poem. BRAVO!
Posted 04/01/2013 09:38 AM
Wilda Morris:
What a touching and cheerful poem with which to begin the new day. I'm smiling!
Posted 04/01/2013 08:45 AM
dotief@comcast.net:
Lovely!
Posted 04/01/2013 08:27 AM
Joe Ottinger:
Good poem. I'm quite a fan of Joe Mills. I live near the city where he grew up. Hope he will find a venue to come home and give a reading sometime soon.
Posted 04/01/2013 08:25 AM
Janet Leahy:
A moment to cherish and remember, wishing you many more happy days with your son.
Posted 04/01/2013 07:59 AM
erinsnana:
you made my day with this poem!
Posted 04/01/2013 07:23 AM
Dorcas:
What an innteresting distracted, reflective and happy drive!!! Be safe!
Posted 04/01/2013 06:31 AM
MaryLeeHahn:
That's my kind of happy!
Posted 04/01/2013 05:22 AM
Latha:
This is a smiling poem indeed! Can't stop smiling and yet it tugs at the heart strings!
Posted 04/01/2013 04:46 AM
jlschuster:
What a beautiful poem. Moments like this are to be savored and honored with poetry. The only art that can do it justice. Thank you for sharing this.
Posted 04/01/2013 04:09 AM


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