How Did It Go

by Bob Bradshaw
The Writer's Block
Honorable Mention, October 2016
Judged by Richard Krawiec

To return to the cottage your family rented each summer
      is like crossing into a foreign country,
the warm sighs of waves rocking against the shores
      drowned out by a nearby club’s punk rock band.

You return to a sky no longer dusted with constellations,
      but to one lost in a fog of city lights.
Is this where you and Sally crooned Beatles’ songs?
      Here, where lyrics are lost in a haze of dangerous noise?

To return, you were sure, would invigorate you,
      but your soul remains as washed out as the night sky.
As you did fifty years ago, you wander outside for a smoke.
      The stars have vanished, like the nightingale.
Can you still mimic its whistle? How did it go?