By Donald Nitchie
Anyone who doesn’t want to leave.
Orlando, sure, New England Aquarium,
school vacations to Sanibel, Mt. Snow
and if you can swing it, Aspen or Bora Bora
but if you can’t, the Town & Beach Motel
in Falmouth where our boys were delighted
to learn sex wasn’t just a myth
but was trying to smash through our adjoining wall
like a crazed washing machine
but which we assured them was just a bed
and couldn’t, so stop giggling and go to sleep,
we need to catch the first boat.
Often nervous off island — all those open spaces,
highways to take you wherever you want
even if maybe you should have waited
until the next boat, should have counted to ten.
Islanders know their limits, and love them
or leave as soon as they graduate.
If you prefer August to November
don’t let the loading door kiss you on your bumper.
If you want to prosper here
convince your boredom to find a hobby.
Don’t need to be from here, just need to choose
here. And we all know why we’re really here:
no place else would suit us.
Donald Nitchie’s poetry has been published by Cape Cod Review, Martha’s Vineyard Arts & Ideas, and “The Further Shore: Exploring Cape Cod and the Islands Through Poetry” (2021). For the past several years he has led Poetry Drop In, in-class writing sessions through the Island libraries — check listings for times. He lives in Chilmark.
Poets with a connection to Martha’s Vineyard are encouraged to submit poems to curator Laura Roosevelt at firstname.lastname@example.org.