Goldilocks Meets Alice in Huron County
a dream poem
Rounding the yard at the end of the lane
looking for Alice Munro’s old home, I
knock on the first door. This house is much
too classically fancy to be hers. The next
cottage is too run-down. The third home
is just right so I open the door and walk in.
Frail Alice greets me seated, eager for any
excuse to dismiss the nurse at her side who is
inquiring about symptoms of spreading cancer.
“I’ll chat with you for a moment,” Alice sings out.
Around her is a grey circle of regulars waiting for
their meeting to begin. The leader, a middle-aged
minister, betrays but little impatience. As the ladies
distribute a pot-luck, Alice asks that I be included.
“We turn away no-one in need,” the minister replies
haughtily, regarding my girth. “I’m in no danger
of starving,” I respond laughing. One by one,
the folks check in with stories of countering
devastating depression. I look around in wonder
at the upright citizens of a small Souwesto town
whose truths Alice has been dealing for decades –
the forbears of her tales, the writer’s source, her
fare and sustenance and now their claim to pride.
This poem was first published in the gorgeous WINDSOR REVIEW: Special Alice Munro Issue. It is from a manuscript in progress, DREAM SEQUINS.