A couple writes love poems

In Whitefish Review’s summer/fall issue #22, “The Stories We Tell,” long-married local couple Eva and Max Maxwell wrote these two poems describing how they first met.

Eva Maxwell grew up in rural Northern Illinois, and in 1967 moved to Montana to teach music at Northern Montana College. Her poetry has appeared in Poems Across the Big Sky II and As It Happens.

Max Maxwell grew up on the sagebrush prairies of Eastern Montana, lived in Butte and retired in the Flathead Valley. He has had poems published in Tyros, As It Happens and Poems Across the Big Sky II.

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FINDING YOU Max Maxwell

In a cripple of cottonwoods

white broken branches

a story of bones

ancient bones

fossil bones

old as a toad

to a mayfly

 

you and I could never meet

on this timeworn ground

one thousand miles apart

 

and yet we did

 

HOP IN Eva Maxwell

Shall we tell the kids how we met?

Tell them that you were starting down

the runway at the Missoula airport

 

in a Cessna one-fifty, when you saw me

standing beside the tarmac, the wind

whipping my thin skirt around my legs,

 

my blond hair around my incredible

face, and that you circled around, landed

and took off again with me on board?

 

No? Try this. I was spinning out of

control down the Clark Fork River

in an inner tube, a self conscious

 

mermaid in a new swim suit.

When I saw you, a wiry curly-haired

savior on the far bank, I called

 

help me.  You plunged into your

canoe, paddled gallantly,

ardently, nudging me ashore.

 

Or tell them my friend and I were waiting

at the light on Higgins Avenue

and you came rolling by in your

 

lovingly polished lipstick red

convertible, screeching to a stop.

Here he is, my friend proclaimed

and you said, warm and friendly,

 

Hop in.  So I did.