For Dick Backus
The round dry cell, as heavy as a brick,
sat on the edge of a window sill. A wire
was attached by a brass screw in the
center of the battery. The wire ran outside
to two, spring loaded, flat tin plates
on a bird feeder. When squirrels jumped on
they got a shock – and jumped off. Coming
for seed, birds were not heavy enough
to trip the connection and feel the current.
In the driveway was a wooden car someone
had made for a kid that ran on an old lead
car battery. It was almost dead and the car
barely moved when I saw it.
In the pines was a small tree house with a B-17
Plexiglas gunner’s dome in its roof. When I
poked my head up into it, I heard Anne, Dick’s
blond, somewhat older sister blow notes on
a trumpet, not quite a tune, but more, as
warning call for things I now think we didn’t
Dick, a boyhood/high school friend, recently driving up Summer Street in Goffstown was shocked to see his family’s house had disappeared. I wasn’t in the house much but frankly I am shocked that it has gone missing, too.