On the occasion of a 50th college reunion

Go forth to seek old friends.
Rise to the occasion as you step into your past.
Play at remembering faces until a
spark of recognition ignites, and memories
flow as smiles grow.
Crush each other in hugs, abandon inhibitions.
Defy years that added stiff knees, sagging skin and sometimes balding heads.
Love simply that you stand with one another, however changed by time.
Wander campus, so different but somehow still the same.
Shine in celebration of life, fifty years later still here . . .
and here again.

IMG_1465

Victoria is host at today’s dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. She asks us to consider the world of pop art: think Andy Warhol’s Campbells Tomato Soup Cans. Several suggestions for poems arise from her prompt, including using a product as the subject of a poem. This cereal box resides within our kitchen cupboard so I’ve used its words to begin each line of my poem. And oh yes…..the Class of 1969 at Augustana College in Rock Island, Illinois was indeed an original and unique one. Photos from this past weekend’s 50th college reunion below. What a wonderful time we had renewing old friendships and taking a walk down the proverbial memory lane!

44 thoughts on “On the occasion of a 50th college reunion

  1. adda October 10, 2019 / 2:09 pm

    Awesome!!! Love how you used the words from the Kashi box to express your venture to college days with friends of the past and present. Every line hit home to me as I think about this past weekend’s venture to the “old home town”. It was wonderful!

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian October 10, 2019 / 4:45 pm

      It was absolutely FABULOUS to see you! And I’m so glad we had a bit of extra time, even if just walking in those old high school halls. Christmas time is facetime or Skype time….I’ll hold you to it! 🙂

      Like

  2. kanzensakura October 10, 2019 / 3:04 pm

    I love that you read the cereal boxes. I do too. I have never been to any of my reunions – high school or college. I am glad you had fun! But I especially like that cereal box and all the positives it offers.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian October 10, 2019 / 4:45 pm

      My brother was a fan of the Wheaties box….all those male athletes. Me? I was into Cheerios — little circles you could wear as rings 🙂

      Like

  3. Victoria C. Slotto October 10, 2019 / 3:06 pm

    How fun and what a great idea. I wish I’d thought of that. I like that “crush each other in hugs” line. How we need that. That’s my memory from my 50th, too.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian October 10, 2019 / 4:47 pm

      It was just amazing and wonderful to see people after so many years. We’re all at the point where there’s no one-upmanship in terms of your career or my career….we’re all on Medicare and retired and just glad to be alive and be there! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. kim881 October 10, 2019 / 3:22 pm

    It looks like you had a wonderful reunion, Lill, and you made great use of the cereal box from your kitchen cupboard – so creative to use the words to begin each line of your poem. I love the idea of rising to the occasion and stepping into your past, and the warmth in the sparks of recognition and smiles!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. msjadeli October 10, 2019 / 4:43 pm

    Perfect pop art to poeticize, Lillian. I like the last 2 lines very much.

    Like

  6. Glenn A. Buttkus October 10, 2019 / 5:02 pm

    So very creative; loved it. I went to a couple high school reunions, but I was sad that only the more successful grads showed up; none of the regular folks from my old circle of friends. Your experience seemed a lot more joyous; smile.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian October 17, 2019 / 2:57 pm

      Have never made it to a high school reunion. A speaker talked about a book written about college reunions as compared to a horse race: 5th reunion….everyone jockeying for positions, comparing their positions; 10th reunion: places in the race have changed, positions rearranged, still jockeying; 20th reunion….race has solidified and places settled; 50th reunion…everyone is just glad to see everyone there alive. 🙂

      Like

  7. Beverly Crawford October 10, 2019 / 6:00 pm

    The perfect cereal box with the perfect cue words for an account of a perfect reunion. BAM!

    Like

  8. rothpoetry October 10, 2019 / 10:39 pm

    A wonderful post Lillian. Love the potos! How interesting that I am attending my 50th class reunion tomorrow! It will be most interesting to see who shows up!

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian October 17, 2019 / 3:00 pm

      I hope you enjoyed your reunion! We had nametags with our college senior year photo on the bottom of them — and they hung on rather long lanyards so they hung about to our navels. You’d walk up to someone, look at their navel (photo first) and then up to their face and reach out to hug saying “Ohhhhhh” — hilarious! Folks look quite different after 50 years! Lots of glancing toward navels before greetings! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • rothpoetry October 17, 2019 / 7:54 pm

        Ha Ha! there were about 45 who showed up for the luncheon and the group photo. Everyone looks so (0ld) different. It was interesting to see and hear what they have been up to since college.

        Liked by 1 person

      • lillian October 19, 2019 / 8:40 am

        Hah! Everyone looked so old except the ones you’ve been seeing on a monthly, or yearly basis, right? If we stand next to someone and see them every day (my spouse), I don’t think he seems so old (till I look at our wedding photos where we look like we’re 12!!!!)….but oh yes….everyone else looks so old 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • rothpoetry October 19, 2019 / 7:21 pm

        Yes you are right! LOL

        Like

  9. Kenji Kojima October 11, 2019 / 12:28 pm

    I will be looking forward to seeing you do the same when you would attend 55th reunion of WTHS next year.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian October 19, 2019 / 8:42 am

      I do hope so! Has the date been set yet, Kenji? I’m looking at the three strings of paper cranes I folded from your paper, hanging in my study window….everytime I look at them I remember our meeting — so wonderful to see you again!

      Like

  10. Rob Kistner October 11, 2019 / 1:30 pm

    Wonderful meditation on the side of a cereal box Lillian… 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  11. sarahsouthwest October 12, 2019 / 3:24 am

    Fabulous response to the prompt! I don’t know if I could face so much enthusiasm from my cereal box first thing in the morning, but it gave you some wonderful words to use so appositely. I’m glad you had a good time – but I think you are the kind of person who always has a good time! So enthusiastic.

    Like

    • lillian October 19, 2019 / 8:44 am

      Well….my daughter calls me “Pollyanna” if that gives you a clue. I find that trying to be positive is a good way to live 🙂 In my 7th decade, many times conversations with friends roll around to health issues and the idea that getting older is not for sissies as my aunt used to say. My response is always, “Yes, but the alternative is not good!” and then I get around to saying, “I delight in getting older!” 🙂

      Like

    • lillian October 19, 2019 / 8:46 am

      Oh yes….didn’t think of it as a “found poem” but that is exactly right! I’ve created “found poems” from book titles on my shelf, popular songs from the year I was born, lists of perfume names someone gave us for a prompt….etc. Found poems can really be fun!

      Like

  12. sdtp33 October 12, 2019 / 8:18 pm

    Clever stuff, Lilian…could be a whole new genre…cereal box poetry

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian October 19, 2019 / 8:46 am

      Well….If I was 100% certain that everyone had cereal boxes in their cupboard, wouldn’t that be an interesting prompt????!!!!

      Liked by 1 person

    • lillian October 19, 2019 / 8:47 am

      Thanks! They are very fun to look back at! And to see the tradition of halloween dress-up continuing with grandchildren!

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s