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The Lone Ranger
by
Penny Harter


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for my father

The Lone Ranger lived
in the old floor-model radio,
the one shaped like the nave
of a cathedral, that stood
beneath the dining-room window
in my childhood apartment.

When my father came home
from some place called work,
we’d pull up two chairs and lean
into sun and dust, as the Lone Ranger
galloped across the plains,
his silver spurs flashing, as he urged
the great horse on—Hi-yo Silver!

I closed my eyes to hear him better,
saw the stallion rear against the sky,
the Ranger wipe sweat from his face
with a red bandana, and then storm
into town, deftly pulling two revolvers,
spinning silver in each hand before
the loud reverberations of his shots.

Afterward, he left that lawless town,
heading for the desert or the hills,
the rising night wind in his wake.

While my mother cooked supper,
and my baby sister crawled around our feet,
my father and I rode with the Lone Ranger,
leaning forward in our saddles,
breathing hard, as our white horses
carried us through the dark.

© 2010 by Penny Harter.
From her forthcoming collection, Portal.
Used with the author's permission.

Purchase a framed print of this poem.

 

Penny Harter is a poet and teacher whose work appears in many print and on-line journals and anthologies. She has received fellowships from the NJ State Council on the Arts, the Poetry Society of America, and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, received the William O. Douglas Nature Writing Award, and was invited to read at the 2010 Geraldine R. Dodge Poetry Festival. After her husband's death in October, 2008, Penny moved to the South Jersey shore area to be near her daughter and family; her chapbook of poems about processing grief, Recycling Starlight, will be out this fall. Learn more about Penny here.

 

 


Post New Comment:
penhart:
Thanks for your insightful and kind comments about my poem!
Posted 08/08/2011 09:01 PM
dotief@comcast.net:
I love a poem like this one that takes me to a different reality and lets me become a participant in that world. So much more is revealed, though, than just a sense of place. The human connections that make life worth living breathe between the lines of this piece. I love a poem like this one!
Posted 08/13/2010 07:05 AM


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