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The Past

Poetry, Jeffery Berg


It wasn’t all neon.

Many times, a dull pearl.


Pleasantly soft 

rubbered buttons 


of a Walkman and the black gold 

of The Beverly Hillbillies.


In our town we could find

at any time


an old or new 

Phil Collins song somewhere


on the radio. The words

of The Blind Assassin


falling away on the book-on-tape

in my station wagon.


A plot unremembered.


He’d get pissed when his pop icon 

was dissed—it’s easy to bind


oneself to another who’s more

ethereal, powerful—


maybe it’s all they have. Joni Mitchell’s 

“Carey” as the train glides 


past Manassas—tree-shaded

houses on flat land under dusk.


The sky: a band of rose 

under grey


until the grey darkens 

and all that’s left 


is ourselves 

and our luggage


and the band of rose

between the trees.

 

Jeffery Berg's poems have appeared in journals such as Impossible Archetype, the Leveler, Court Green, and Pine Hills Review. Jeffery lives between Jersey City and Provincetown and regularly reviews films for Film-Forward.

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