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The Electric Airplane

(a memoir to forget)
In 1962 when I was eight there it flew
in comic book advertisements:
Battery Powered Airplane
Install a penlight cell and Watch It
Fly $3.95 post paid
My childish self intrigued—excited
to think a toy would soar without
a twisted rubber band.  Amazing
I saved allowance for one month.
The money was mailed in.
The next week
nothing came. Two weeks later
a white card arrived. They wrote
they had my order and
there was a cost involved:
three dollars and ninety five cents.
Please send us the money
then we will send the plane
To my father with some tears:
"I sent them the money. This says
they didn't get the money."
How he reacted.
He pounded
a note
in capitals
through the ribbon's red half
on his Remington
a condemnation of plane people
as bilkers and breakers
of childhood dreams
that scarlet letter.
That was the end of it.
I did not get the toy—
a three way loss for sure
for me for them for Dad.
Sometime later it occurred
perhaps it is not
a good plan
to overload       a plain
old envelope
with loose quarters dimes and nickels.

20 Mar 07

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I love the story, a beautiful childhood reflection - I just wonder if it would benefit from streamlining to become a tighter image, fine if you're going for a 'prose' feel, but what is that adding?
 — kendell

I would get rid off lines 28 - 33. Nice enough story.
 — unknown

thank you both.  I can agree about losing lines 28 through 33---for general purposes.
The essay was made for the RCgroups forum--which is why those lines were wanted, to lead to the wistful finish.  The hobby today cost, heck, a lot more than three dollars and ninety five sense.

Here are those lines--I'll remove them from the item for the time being:

Perhaps the envelope split open in the mail
and nobody but some postal worker received benefits.


I lost interest too early in electric flights.

I think I'll give it another go soon.

Where do I send the next $3.95?

thank you both for ideas,

 — netskyIam

OK, the item is now greatly tightened and retouched for gentle ironies.
I hope it conveys the tragedy of childhood (good riddance) succinctly.
My dad never knew I'd sent loose change.
He naturally presumed I'd sent four dollar bills.
It really did require some months my end, to realize that the envelope must've spilled its payload.  I did not dare tell my dad then, that his idiot son had sent loose change through the mail.  

Ah, the secrets we keep... dark stuff! lol.
 — netskyIam

Here is a reading of the item, as it stands on 3/23/07:
 — netskyIam

nice. really good structure. helps the poem a lot.
 — listen


You are a star. What a brilliant and evocative poem. Love your pics by the way. You are almost as handsome as my good self and I don't say that often

Larry struck dumb Lark
 — larrylark

You are too kind to this troll, Larry.  I've revised the poem since last March, just a bit.
Here's an imperfect, new reading (I forced the title too much, and rushed the parenthetical line, and elsewhere---this is why I record, for practice in getting diction correct, which, in turn, helps to show me how to best break lines and mark the item.

new reading
http://tinyurl.com/2mjw9q< br />
Thanks so much Larry and listen too.

 — netskyIam

tinyurl. com/2mjw9q
links are still broken here.  
copy and paste this one to the address bar, and be sure to close the space
 — netskyIam