Time Traveler


 Time Traveler


His had been a quiet career.

Stable, stress free and profitable.

There was comfort in the columns of figures

         so neatly lined and fixed on each ledger page.

The office was businesslike and predictable.

Income and expenditures were recorded

         each day for 33 years.

He left his desk for the last time        

         gold watch in hand and

         not a future-hinted lunch date.

Days of quiet leisure turned into months

         until he was out of ideas for the time

         between breakfast and dinner.

He longed for the comfort and security

         of his number columns.

As he watched a rerun of Oprah

         a call came from the wife 

         of the head of the parts department

         in his old company.

Would he be willing to come down

         to the Pioneer Museum and give

         a hand at straightening

         out the books?

Easy to do.

Little income.

Few expenses.

First a bookkeeper

         with time on his hands.

Then the seduction of the Docent World.

And so it was that he

         became a player on the stage

         of the time travelers.

Each day he commuted from today

         into yesteryear.

He studied the lives of those

         who lived before until

         they became friends

         with names and personalities.

He read every yellowed diary and letter

         left behind.

He searched biographies

         for new information.

He collected racy gossip

         to share with adults

         and folklore for the children.

Soon a Colonial beard and accent

         and costume became part of his being.

Docent, time traveler, historical schizophrenic--

         he was a time traveler.

And if ever this Brigadoon

         was to close its open borders,

         he knew in which world he wanted to live.




I am not sure when I wrote tis. I had been in touch with docents when I retired and was fascinated by how they became part of what they were showing. There was a docent at the railroad museum in Sacramento who became part of the exhibit. Day and night he was a railroad engineer. What I would give to crawl in the mind of a few docents