Cassette of Love

a poem by
DON CAMPBELL | Teacher + Poet

“Cassette of Love” is a poem that was written to remember a memorable person who played a small role in my life, and as a ‘recording’ of the technology of the time. I think we can all laugh at the past for its particular quirks, but can still find that emotions are timeless.

Photo by Markus Spiske

SHE drove a jeep
with the top down
as open as her
bright toothy smile

on the freeway
onramp she steered
into acceleration
I said “Woah!”

“I’ve got this–
pop it in, baby”
(and you can hear
how much I like you)

born again songs
from a rock ‘n’ roller’s
Christmas album
bounced along with her

happy husky voice
framed by squirrel
red blow-dried hair
(a shorter version of Farrah)

I went to high
school with her
brother who played
guitar at church

and became my
neighbor allowing me
to meet his sister
in the most natural way

next to the pool
of our complex
where my mind filled
with the idea

of making her
a mixtape trying
to bond with
her cheerfulness

now I was an ex
altar boy, godless
sun worshipper
moved by music

like it was a religion
something called desire
driving me to
put a rectangle

of plastic and
magnetic film
into a woman’s
outstretched hand

to try to attract
those hazelnut eyes
to lock with mine
in shared rhythm