Charles Harper Webb

We Rarely Mark When They’ve Occured:  


Last home run.  Last pot roast
          cooked by Momma’s hand.
                    Last blood-red sunrise staining

a favorite trout-stream.  Last
          healthy day.  I rise from bed
                    to make my love a cup of tea.

Whack!  A pole-axe severs us
          forever.  Even memories,
                    in their brilliant tie-dyed tee-

shirts, file aboard the future’s
          747—gone.  Like my last whiff
                    of plumeria—the last day

sprinklers woke me to the sough
          of waves—my last papaya,
                    spooned like orange candy

from the green-and-yellow rind,
          one dove hollering,
                    Who Hrrooo! as the rest

soothe, Keeokuk, Whee-oh wha,
          which means, “Each
                    day is a new bride.”  Like

the last time my pencil slides
          across the paper, jabs
                    a period, and lifts, satisfied.

Charles Harper Webb’s What Things Are Made Of, was published in 2013 by the University of Pittsburgh Press, which will release Brain Camp, his next book, in 2015. Recipient of grants from the Whiting and Guggenheim foundations, Webb teaches in the MFA Program in Creative Writing at California State University, Long Beach.