Ian Willey

Rubber Band

It’s hard to believe now
but we don’t have any pictures
from those days on the lake,
nor does mom remember them,
and my brothers were too young,
so that leaves me and my memories
of corn on the cob and a steaming cauldron,
plus one little thing that somehow ended up
in a box full of postcards and letters:
a rubber band, small and thick, not very pliable,
the kind used to keep a lobster’s claws shut tight
so it can’t hurt other lobsters while waiting
in a crowded tank smelling of the sea,
bubbling on the surface,
crystal clear below.

Ian Willey has spent his entire life living somewhere else.