Wanderlust (poem swap edition)

28 Jul


What’s second-best to Christmas? A parcel from the post-person during summer poem swap season, of course!

When I opened my front door after a summons by the bell on Monday, there was no one there. But there was an intriguing white package propped against the doorframe—poem swap goodies from Irene Latham!


The Car and the car! (Summer poem swap 2017)

The parcel had in it a coloring sheet, perfectly in sync with my 2017 one-little-word “Listen,” a book, The Car, by Gary Paulsen, an actual car—a tiny metal roadster complete with two seats and a transparent front window (cutest thing you ever saw), and this poem…

RoadSong 1

I love everything in this poem swap parcel but my favorite item is the poem. It reminds me of the summer and fall way back, when I and a couple of friends spent four months backpacking around Great Britain and the Continent. (Yes, that’s what we boomers did in the 70s; we called it the “Europe cure.”) For two of those months we rode the trains, crisscrossing Europe on a Eurail Pass.

Irene’s got it exactly right. The train cubicle, your pack, the hostel are your whole world—bed, dining room, office, garbage can… The sky is the only constant. And you begin to feel like a creased old map, up for any destination, knowledgeable, wise, and invincible.

poetryfridayThis poem is linked to Poetry Friday, hosted today by Linda Mitchell at her blog A Word Edgewise where a poetry prompt auction is going on!


Posted by on July 28, 2017 in Poems by others, Poetry Friday


Tags: , , ,

12 responses to “Wanderlust (poem swap edition)

  1. Tabatha

    July 28, 2017 at 6:41 am

    So much love for that ending! “and suddenly we are all unfolded maps; we can go anywhere.” I should put that next to my computer.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Brenda Davis Harsham

    July 28, 2017 at 8:23 am

    I’m with Tabatha. That line, I had to read it twice in surprise, and then once more like a kid greedy for ice cream. What a great package, Violet. And here, I am just sending postcards. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Linda Mitchell

    July 28, 2017 at 11:46 am

    Oh, my goodness…..we all become maps and can go anywhere.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Jane the Raincity Librarian

    July 28, 2017 at 12:22 pm

    My partner and I spent six weeks riding the rails and backpacking through Japan, and it was an experience I’ll never forget – like you said, it’s that feeling of incredible freedom. At the beginning of the trip we were terrified and overwhelmed, but by the end, we had become those creased, weather-beaten maps, experienced, wise and up for anything!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. lindabaie

    July 28, 2017 at 12:30 pm

    I’ve only been “out” with a pack for a couple of weeks with students in Mexico, but loved every minute. Your four months sounds lovely, maybe a shorter time on a bucket list? What a wonder of a ‘wander’ poem by Irene. I want to turn into an unfolded map! Your gifts of whimsy car and book AND the poem are special, Violet. (I love this swapping!)

    Liked by 1 person

  6. margaretsmn

    July 28, 2017 at 2:29 pm

    There is so much to love about Irene and her gifts. I could read the poem over and over and never tire of hearing it. And like others, I gravitate to the unfolded maps. That wistful hope that we all have to be carefree on a road trip to anywhere.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Kay McGriff (@kaymcgriff)

    July 29, 2017 at 6:00 am

    I love this poem–everything about it–the invitation to travel in ways that both expand and focus.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. haitiruth

    July 29, 2017 at 5:56 pm

    I love Irene’s poem and your response to it! Ruth,

    Liked by 1 person

  9. maryleehahn

    July 30, 2017 at 6:04 am

    Love this poem! (What fun “accessories,” too!)

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Donna Smith

    July 30, 2017 at 1:01 pm

    Though this is about a road trip, I see it as a life trip, too. Love it. Rereading it only makes it better.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. macrush53

    July 31, 2017 at 7:22 pm

    This poem fits what my husband and I love to road trips. How perfect!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Michelle Kogan Illustration, Painting & Writing

    July 31, 2017 at 10:58 pm

    What a wonderful package you received, and a marvelous road trip adventure poem! I love the last line, “and we can go anywhere”–Free and hopefully with inviting any possibility. This tied in so well with your traveling across Europe, what fun, thanks!

    Liked by 1 person


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