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The Sphinx of Professor Street
by Richard Livingston
Under the Carolina dusk-between
Reclined yet standing guard upon my driveway
and bathed gently
in the garage's rattling fluorescence
my mulch pile
has assumed the stature of sphinx.
his own slow, deliberate decline.
Monument to mole hill.
Godhead to garden bed.
Compost as stoic guardian
once believed eternal is fleeting.
A few shovels of dirt.
Very often, poems are bolts of inspiration amid mundane circumstances. Such is the case with Richard Livingston, who works in Cary as a marketing executive with a technology firm.
His honorable mention entry, "The Sphinx of Professor Street," was inspired by yard work. "You have a lot of time to think when you're moving 15 yards of mulch," he says with a laugh. "It was one of those evenings when the light was just right—the light from the garage."
Asked about his inspirations, Livingston cites Robert Frost and, "depending on your definition of poet, Dylan, too." —David Fellerath