I am a retired business-to-business PR and publishing professional residing in northern New Jersey with my wife and son and a shrinking menagerie of merry pets. I began writing poetry (not very well) 100 years ago as an undergraduate at Georgetown University, where I earned bachelor's and master's degrees in English Literature. My poems have appeared recently in Contemporary American Voices (I was the Featured Poet in the January 2015 issue), the Wilderness House Literary Review, Blue Monday Review, and Atavic Poetry. In 2013, I celebrated (mostly by smiling a lot) the publication of my first poetry chapbook, What Comes Next, by Finishing Line Press. A lifelong Giants fan (New York and San Francisco), I still can't believe I lived long enough to see them win three World Series in five years. If you'd like to see more of my work, please click on http://www.whlreview.com/no-9.4/poetry/JamesKeane.pdf.
Editor's Note: In his submission letter to me Jim wrote: For October, I'd like to contribute "Small Wonder," a poem inspired by my cherished memory of the Dugan man, who delivered doughnuts and other baked goods to my home in Wantagh, Long Island. I was about four years old when he would stop by in his truck. I was shy, which you might guess from the final image of him, his shoes. Why didn't I contribute this to the Food issue? Doughnuts, after all, qualify as food, don't they? Because I simply forgot I had written such a poem. It was Alan Walowitz's mention of Harold Dugan, who delivered baked goods in "The Cost of Bread," that jogged my memory.
I remember the man with dark hair
who comes to my house forever
on a sunny morning.
His undershirt is flexed and
white, with wide-muscled arms
coming out of sleeves flapping
when he lurches to a stop
in a big green truck
with the quickness of assurance.
Briskly march the doughnuts
up my walk in a strong green
carrying case, an iron handle
stacks of boxes rustling with them.
Always the cellophane crinkles de-
liciously, tastier to my tongue
than the doughnuts ever tasted, crumbling
in my throat. Still, the disappointment
whenever I choke on their tickling
clouds my smile
through the jalousie door
at the man who never smiles
yet always appears so bright
carrying his case stacked with radiant
sweetness I’ve never tasted before.
Was there anything I wouldn’t admit
at the age of four
when the jalousie door
swings open, uncovering
two black shoes
under dark dungarees
with socks between
and no laces?
I don’t remember.
First published in Autumn Leaves.
©2016 James Keane
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