A pastoral is usually a pleasant description of nature, or the pastor, and can be quite gods-awful in its sappiness. In some ways, the biggest play on words here, is the fact that this pastoral is about an urban scene, which is honestly meant to say that the American idea of the pastoral is all gone...and at best it is our children that will show us the joy of simple nature.

Children, the color of a quiet rain, Descend out of the twilight Into the humming distance of streetlamps And illuminated living room windows. Faces aglow, intense emotions, Playing out as conquerors and sane people And being their own young dreams, seemingly So grown-up and mature, in the context of But a handful of years, and a half. Five or six of them, Seven on some especially loud days, Four that once, last July, vacation week, Right up to the end of the road, And back, a number of times. Neighbors turn, Aquiesce With smiles and polite acknowledgements. The corner swallows them, the rain is gone, Though one can still pick up A faint laughter of footsteps.

This poem written by W. Doug Bolden.

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