Real

Untroubled by origins
I allow myself the delight
Of an unexpected discovery
Inviting adventure.

The climb and crawl
To the attic was real,
A story unlike any other
In our storied school’s history.
My steadfast companions
From that day will live
In the part of my heart
Reserved for Hardy Boys books,
Summer forts
And the Daniel Boone coonskin cap of my youth.

The volume of Scott was real
Older than our school
By more than a hundred years
Its inscription:
To Mary St. More
Christmas 1890
A story I will never know.

The very real key fit a lock
In a wooden door from 1949
Turning when guided by a student’s hand
And engaging the antique lock with a very real
Click.

The words in the story
Of pirates and poets and puppets
As real as many stories I’ve read at school
Led to a very real map
And a spot in the very real grass
So green with spring
After such a long, long winter
Where a very real mason jar
Held a cow everyone recognized
As belonging to a girl named Mary.

Whoever, however,
These matter less to me
Than the very real adventure
The very real discovery
The very real laughter and digging and fun
That these objects brought
To the most important part of this great game
The treasure hunters,
All of them,
Who helped bring to life
Admiral Clarence Morgan Arbuthnot.

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