Heading West

The Final Bow, II © Joseph Hesch, 2015

The Final Bow, II
© Joseph Hesch, 2015

He stares at the autumn trees
as they sway in October’s breeze,
because, like he, they’ve changed
from gin to bourbon, going to brown
and ready to drop.
The trees have forgotten how to color,
to glow in their Northeast neon glory,
the natural Broadway show of SRO
they always did until this year.
No premiere, no revival, no road show
left for the busted impresario
of his own life.

He’s put down his pen since Act Three’s
well upon him and he knows
the climax is out of his hands.
So he stands in the back of the theatre
of his days and sways to the tune
he almost remembers, a whispered whoosh
maybe like the strings bowed
in the overture of his days,
back when the curtains we’re red,
the lights were gold and he rode
the orange sun onstage from the east.

Now he opens his arms to the audience,
dropping vitality like leaves,
in a final sunset bow,
heading west.

I’m feeling the autumn of my years upon me today.  Losing abilities and memories with each dropping leaf from calendars and trees. Maybe  that’s why this piece feels so difficult to express and communicate to you.

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4 thoughts on “Heading West

  1. “He’s put down his pen since Act Three’s
    well upon him and he knows
    the climax is out of his hands.”

    This is the part that is sticking with me.

    I know how you feel. My memory is failing me also. I worry what next. But here we are…and the way you wrote this is just write, and touches others

  2. I love this particular poem. Perhaps it is because it rings true for me also on this day that I finally got to read it. Perhaps it is because I have clients who have very limited short term memory, but long term memories by the tree-full. Either way, I love the way you put this poem together so well. It made me smile in recognition. 🙂

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