Bronx longings

Bronx longings

A Poem by jacob erin-cilberto
"

inspired by dana's al kaline poem

"
Bronx longings

I want to put on the old Keds
and play hopscotch with the squirrels in the park

scrape my knees on the pavement of little dreams
I remember looking up forever
the windows kept climbing
necks strained toward a smoggy azure sky
clotheslines leaning over trampled boulevards

vintage cars not vintage at the time
Big Plymouths roaring like rhinos in a concrete jungle
of imagination

I went sailing on the Harlem
as I dove off a roof into the raging river of youth
played Nok-Hockey with kids twice my height and age
and kicked their butts
because I had my own board at home and practiced continuously

beating my god-dad left-handed
or maybe he let me, how could i know

and he is too dead now to ask
and i am getting dead in a paranoid apartment
of contagion...
more the thoughts than the actual disease

Bronx longings,
just one look back,
one foot in the Keds on the chalk lined hopscotch board
painted yellow on a block as the Good Humor Man
caused us glad interruption

just one look back,
and i can rest in peace

far far from home.


erin-cilberto
4/7/2020

© 2020 jacob erin-cilberto


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Reviews

I like this, Jacob. We were human sponges when young, absorbing and tasting life that was fresh and new. (With senses most keen) Truly, there's no place like home.

Posted 3 Months Ago


jacob erin-cilberto

3 Months Ago

thank you for your kind words, Sam,
j.
J
An exceptional memoir poem. Great how you connect your past with the present situation. Yes . . . there is certain feeling of safety reliving our past . . . especially as kids. Real good work here! Thanks for sharing.
T

Posted 3 Months Ago


jacob erin-cilberto

3 Months Ago

thank you, T.---i imagine most who read this never heard of the game Nok-Hockey...it was big in the .. read more
kentuck14

3 Months Ago

doing ok my friend. thx.
Wow, this was beautifully written, took me back to when I was a kid too. It was a really nice story and an incredibly peaceful ending. Thanks for that.

Posted 3 Months Ago


jacob erin-cilberto

3 Months Ago

Thank you for your kind words, Ben.
j.
Loved this Jacob
Me being Aussie what is keds is it shoes or jeans
Take care

Oops just looked them up we have em here too

Posted 3 Months Ago


jacob erin-cilberto

3 Months Ago

Old sneakers...
thank you, Julie...
j.
Julie McCarthy (juliespenhere)

3 Months Ago

Yes I saw the brand on net
Loved your poem
Can I go with you? When I was station at Fort Dix, New Jersey. I spend many weekends roaming the New York area. I won't lie. I did enjoy the taverns and the kind people. I hope Jacob, you are doing well and be safe. Thank you for sharing the amazing poetry and your thoughts.
Coyote

Posted 3 Months Ago


jacob erin-cilberto

3 Months Ago

thank you for your kind words, Coyote...take care of you, my friend.
j.
Coyote Poetry

3 Months Ago

You are welcome my friend.
Hmmm! Black high tops and those thick white wool socks...ducktails...and Brylcreem...rattail comb sticking out the back pocket of a pair of chinos. Pick up baseball games and hockey played on the old pond once she froze over, and we couldn't wait.
My Dad's old '56 dodge had push button controls for the tranny on the left side of the dash. Those old black & white photos show a skinny kid with a silly smirk looking to see what he could get into...mostly trouble it seemed.
For some reason I've always liked the name 'The Bronx"

Thanks for the trip j. I enjoyed it.

Posted 3 Months Ago


jacob erin-cilberto

3 Months Ago

Yes, something about that name "The Bronx"--
and all of what you brought up....and those old .. read more
Ted Kniffen

3 Months Ago

And my personal favourite...the Nash Neapolitan...a crazy little car.
Odd how offhand encounters can trigger long buried memories. This one pertains mainly to New York City, but I recall learning how to drive in one of those big Plymouths. Interestingly, the pandemic makes a cameo appearance, an indication of how it is permeating our current lives. Yes, old memories can be satisfying, but I would not return to those times for a tractor trailer full of toilet paper.

Posted 3 Months Ago


jacob erin-cilberto

3 Months Ago

thank you for your sharing...was your Plymouth a manual or automatic...Seems if I remember right, ba.. read more
Melancholy reflections. We all look back and wish things could be the same...that the people we grew up with could still be with us. Especially now during this self-isolation, all we have are memories and images in the movie theater of our minds. My memories play hopscotch on days like this. I never do step on he lines though. I could almost see the Good Humor truck as I read your words....the nostalgia is super. Lydi**

Posted 3 Months Ago


jacob erin-cilberto

3 Months Ago

ha ha ha ha ha SLURP...
Lydia

3 Months Ago

LOL Never did like the feel of the wooden stick on my tongue after most of the ice cream was gone t.. read more
jacob erin-cilberto

3 Months Ago

Me either....ugh...yuck.
This is charming and also has the underlying seriousness of this pandemic.

Posted 3 Months Ago


jacob erin-cilberto

3 Months Ago

thank you for your kind words, Allie.
j.
Allie Brumfield

3 Months Ago

You're welcome :)
You gave me hella chills with your beautiful Bronx retrospective Jacob. So personal, authentic, wistful and resonant. You bring me back with your words. In surreal solitude, we look backward..."One foot in the Keds on the chalk lined hopscotch board...just one look back"...Yes. I too, look back with you. One foot out, one foot in. One tear for the memories. Thank you for this journey. Stay hopeful, safe and well, my friend.

Posted 3 Months Ago


jacob erin-cilberto

3 Months Ago

Thank you for your kind words, and understanding, Annette,
j.

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Added on April 7, 2020
Last Updated on April 7, 2020

Author

jacob erin-cilberto
jacob erin-cilberto

Carbondale, IL



About
Originally from Bronx, NY, I live in Carbondale, Illinois...teach English at two community colleges and have been writing and publishing poetry since 1970. Friending works two ways. If we have had .. more..

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