One True Sentence (Written January 24)

One True Sentence


The end of the summer came,

And the marsh grasses turned

Red and yellow and brown.


Hordes of returning students filled

The sleepy streets of the town.

Ned had been a student here


But quit after his freshman year,

To hitchhike across country,

With dreams of being a writer.


He moved around, shiftless,

Until he arrived at the doorstep

Of the one writer he most admired.


The writer, it turned out, to Ned’s good

Fortune, was looking for someone to hire,

To help him with a huge pile


Of letters he needed to answer. The master

Liked him because he made him smile.

Months went by but one night


Ned drank too much, as he often did,

And got into a fight

With a boy, and knocked him cold.


He fled, without leaving a note.

He put everything, his life, on hold,

Never able to find anything to match


His experience with the famous writer.

He married, had children, but left to catch

A ride back east, to the same college town


Where he had once studied. He lived

A recluse, finding it more and more difficult

To write, to get one true sentence down.

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