Five Reasons Why I Still Have This Jacket Hanging In My Closet



It’s 100% polyester,

and you can never

own enough polyester.


And the stitching

looks really retro.

Thought so then,

think so now.


And it’s the only

article of clothing

I still possess

from my high school days.


And the flying red horse

helps me soar back in time

way back across the miles

to a place where

thirty-six years ago

I worked at a Mobil station

pumping gas

checking oil

washing windshields

filling tires with air


telling stories



and hanging out

with my best friends

for shift after shift

after shift

and getting paid

(minimum wage) for it.

What else is there to do

when you’re sixteen?


Plus, it still fits

so I wear it sometimes.

And that’s embarrassing

when I choose to get the jacket

still hanging in my closet

thirty-six years later

and wear it around the house

when my kids

are hanging out

with their best friends.



This poem is the result of using a method of generating ideas for a poem taken from a lesson plan entitled, “The Image List” by Michael McGriff. It’s included in the book, Open the Door, which was published in 2013 by The Poetry Foundation. Through three timed exercises, a poet can generate lists of sensory details and other material to use for a poem about an object to which they have a strong personal connection.




6 thoughts on “Five Reasons Why I Still Have This Jacket Hanging In My Closet

  1. Ha! Thank you!
    Oh my, I feel so bad — I saw this picture scrolling in the Reader and I thought, what is THAT? Yew. Can’t be a good post.
    Ay, prejudice! It exists in blogs! Never again. Love imagining you trouncing around in this, MATT, letting the kids have it. Lord knows how much they gave us out in public when they were little!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I am impressed by the poem and by the fact that the jacket still fits. The next time I fill up my car, I will wonder what poems are being written in the minds if the young men pumping my gas.

    Liked by 1 person

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