We’re all ten years old When Old Man Tuolumne Storm, Strolls through the campground. He’s that fat uncle Who spits when he speaks, Cracks his knuckles, Slaps his hammy thighs and Shouts When you don’t expect it. He flexes arms, Bulgy as fish bellies And white With blue-black tattoos. His cloud-fingers poke The sky’s ribs Too hard for it to tickle. Besides, he’s the only one laughing, Laughing loud, At his own jokes. Feet shifting Like we must pee in the next five seconds Or die, All us ten-year-olds Jump and shout At his lightning tricks. Though we’re more than just glad He’ll be gone Before dinner.
Poem by Robert Walton
Robert Walton retired from teaching after thirty-six years of service at San Lorenzo Middle School. He is a lifelong rock climber and mountaineer with ascents in Yosemite and Pinnacles National Park. He’s an experienced writer with published works including historical fiction, science fiction, fantasy and poetry. Walton’s novel Dawn Drums won the 2014 New Mexico Book Awards Tony Hillerman Prize for best fiction. “Sockdologizer”, his dramatization of Abraham Lincoln’s assassination, won the Saturday Writers 2020 Everything Children contest. Most recently, his “Mansa Musa’s Wisdom” was published in Cricket Media’s February, 2022 issue of Spider magazine .