The Historian – Remembering What I Was Unable to See



Quietly contemplating the moving hands

The weathered face of an ancient pocket watch

Its origin likely anchored in days nearly forgotten

Better times to some, hardship to others

Now sadly, only the ups and downs remain


Passing seconds harboring tales of humanity

Recollections of existing and living

Lifetimes spent in search of something meaningful

Others simply passing by like a shadow

Colorizing the world for but a moment


We remember the wars, famine, and hardship

Days when living was nearly equal to dying

Empty bellies, empty wallets, empty pantries

Young men resting under six feet of earth

Young love and young ladies left behind


Oil booms, market busts, and necessity

Mothering-in inventions that made life better

Conflicts on the streets between the races

Children lost amongst the empty spaces

As the bulldozer of progress moves ever forward


To those who seek, that which is momentarily forgotten

Each passing second is another wall

Building blocks in the mausoleum of history

Hallowed by thy name which we called many things

When simply stating “lost” would meet our needs


Does anyone speak for the moments of obscurity?

Weeks and months between the ups and downs

Where nothing happened anywhere; everywhere

The papers had little to report on

As if the world decided to take a short vacation


Forgotten are the photographs of those quiet times

When lover’s shared hurried whispers and moments

Thin bands of silver and gold slipped over soft fingers

One soiled knee and a commitment to forever

Honorable oaths exchanged under a shady tree


Lines of families walking in their Sunday best

Heads bowed reverently, children walking silently

The rows of headstones always there to remind

Flowers blooming from the falling tears

A passing moment in a passing lifetime


The notch aside the kitchen door

Another inch taller, another passing year

Shoes too small, jacket tight in the chest

Faded jumper handed down, finally to rest

And the school bell ringing in the distance


Reunions in grassy groves, with borrowed chairs

Tables covered with every family recipe

Dogs begging, babies crying, baseball and lemonade

Giggles and snickers at every aunt and uncle kiss

And the forever-warmth of grandma’s hugs


Smoke from the charcoal and grandpa’s Chevy

Teenage boys, their heads buried under the hood

Whispers of the gals as they watched them tinker

Warm summer nights chasing fireflies

Fireworks, campfires, and lazy fishing from the docks


The tears from a lost baseball, or a lost game

Mother’s apron to dry their eyes

Milk and cookies to bring back their smiles

The dust of home plate upon their dungarees

The arms of friends around their shoulders


Conversations, speeches, and orations

When the spoken words were still spoken

Important things were written down and preserved

Diaries and journals had real meaning

Unknowingly, as the keepers of history


So when I find myself lost momentarily

Quietly contemplating the dial of twelve

Please try not to interrupt me

For the historian, every moment is important, with meaning

I’m remembering that which I was unable to see


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