The Old Pump
The old broken pump cries with a muffled rusted voice.
Actually, no one remembers if it ever pumped living water.
A spindly-fingered dry brush has grown around it —
tugging it down, as if claiming it for the earth below.
Moaning wind haunts the great old Oak nearby;
a favorite of the old man who died in this house.
Harold had cared for his dangerously senile wife
before relatives decided Esther would be better off in a home.
A home with better care and easier meals
and besides Harold was too old to care for himself.
But before they could take her, Esther just walked away.
Some say she died in the woods but her body was never found.
They say, until he died, Harold put flowers near the pump each week
and watered them daily as the loyal Oak groaned.
Esther only knew one home
and Harold did not want to live alone.
Poem & Photo Background:
From our kitchen window, I can see the old pump next to the chicken pen. To my eye, the pump stands out as an eerie presence. But a photo from our window did not capture the pump as well as my eye did, so I went out and took a close up. But even the close-up did not capture the eeriness I spoke of. So I have written this narrative poem in answer to Mama Zen’s prompt at Real Toads to look out our window and write something scary about what we see. Also, see my poem “A Sitar’s Drone” which speaks about how it is hard to capture what we experience.
Comment Suggestion: Please tell me what the poem says to you so I can see if my intent was understood. Criticisms and long comments are coveted!