Hearing Polkas on the Plains

 

Hearing Polkas on the Plains
     (Near Strasburg, North Dakota)

 She cannot explain why
she veers from Route 83
when the sign points left
to the boyhood home
of Lawrence Welk. A mile
or two of gravel and she ends up
at a well-kept farmhouse
on the banks of a large pond.

She cannot explain why
she gets out of the car to take
photos of weathered signs,
a bandstand or a field
of wheat. Bird songs
and a soft whistle of wind
are the only music here.
No one to dance to with.

She only knows that something
tugs at her way out here,
back to Saturday nights
when she whirled around
the living room linoleum
in pajamas and pin curls,
before she ever thought
she was too cool not to.

 Prairie Poetry Web site, November 2004

 This poem will be published in an anthology of northern plains poems called the Otter Tail Review, Vol. III in October 2009.

 

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