Umbrella Burlesque

Sometimes life seems filled with hidden meanings, or is it simply our attempt to create order out of the apparent chaos that surrounds us? You have to decide which interpretation you prefer. In the meantime, here is –


Umbrella Burlesque


In the far corner of my front closet

a half dozen umbrellas huddle

like performance-weary refugees

of an old-time variety show.


The inner skeleton of one is so rusted

it will no longer open.

Forever shut up, its bright nylon fabric

and fancy wooden handle

belie its enduring stillness.


At its side, another opens easily

but  stays open only for a moment,

quickly collapsing on itself

like a large black bird hastily depluming.


Another, bought on the street for a dollar

during a summer shower,

ejects its square metallic button when its pressed

on the handle, sending it with agitated aplomb

across my cloud-darkened living room,

revealing a pent-up inner spring.


Yet another opens to expose

spokes that precariously poke

through its taut outer membrane.

Torn by a forgotten wind,

its recoiled fabric offers only a fractional shelter.


I am running late, so choose the least

damaged  among them,

inadvertently protecting the most washed up

from being lost later that day.


Gregory A. Abel

This entry was posted in Poetry. Bookmark the permalink.

20 Responses to Umbrella Burlesque

  1. Jungle Mama says:

    Great poem.  I have about the same stash in my own front entry way now.  And our very best was left at the children\’s museum in Amsterdam a couple months back.  I still mourn that faithful umbrella every time I must pick from the other weary soldiers.

  2. Unknown says:

    I love this!  Love it!  For its "under" meaning so to speak.

  3. Charlotte says:

    umbrellas..  what a cool poem…. I could relate….  enjoy the day.. hugs, lottiemae

  4. PJ says:

    Good Evening Jorge,
    It has been awhile since I have stopped by. I do hope that things are going well for you and your family. The weather here has been really it has in most parts of the country for this time of year. However, today is the picture perfect day of how Spring should be !! Gorgeous out.
    Until next time..Keep Smiling.

  5. Beach Bum says:

    Creating order out of chaos is something is eluding me of late…I\’m about ready to become and ostrich.
    Now I must go read your previous entry…intriguing title…

  6. Gelert says:

    Yeahhh, excellent as always. You know, that could appear as a parable in the bible, it made me think of the parable of the sower. \’The parable of the umbrellas\’ would surely have been written in later times. Always good to visit Jorge.

  7. Suzalita says:

    This is so lovely – I really enjoyed this! So much thought about a humble umbrella!

  8. Marie says:

    This is very nice.  It reminded of a poem that my daughter wrote about pencils.
    Hugs, Marie

  9. Bittersweet on-the-hill. says:

    I think of have one of each somewhere.  What is funny, is that just this week I was thinking of going on-line and finding a few inexpensive umbrellas.  Great poem.
    I am enjoying "In This House of Brede," and I did enjoy "The Cloister Walk."  Norris\’s book was more relevant from the point of view of going on a retreat.  Both great reads.
    Our nice weather has finally come.  I\’m waiting for it to get a few degrees warmer and maybe by late morning I will be outside.  You take care.        Bittersweet

  10. Rama says:

    Lovely poem, makes us think.I just stopped by to say Hello, it has been a long time. How r u?
    Take care nad have a great weekend,bye, Rama.

  11. Rama says:

    Lovely poem, makes us think.I just stopped by to say Hello, it has been a long time. How r u?
    Take care nad have a great weekend,bye, Rama.

  12. Cheryl says:

    This was wonderful….  I have a few umbrella\’s and that pretty much describes them…

  13. Fenix says:

    Hello Jorge, how are you?
     I Always oversight my umbrella in any place,  I should buy another umbrella continuously.
    Nice poem
    Have a great weekend

  14. Vonnie says:

    Hi Jorge! How are you, sweet friend? I do hope that life is treating you well, and the sun is shining warmly upon your shoulders… giving you no reason to need an umbrella. 😉 (Although, my friends in Australia would be more than happy to have to pull out the umbrellas as their drought continues… *sigh*). Anyway, this quaint little poem made me think of my little vacation in England (you may remember). I did not anticipate the rain… so I bought an umbrella while I was there. I picked the cheapest one I saw, and went on my marry way. Here\’s a tip… if you\’re ever visiting England, be sure to set aside 20 pounds for a really good, hurricane proof umbrella… the little cheapie umbrella won\’t get you past the first gust of wind! 😉 Thanks for sharing the poem, and prompting a sweet memory. I hope you\’re doing well, and hope to see you again soon. Take good care. (((big hug))). Yvonne. x 

  15. Stephen Craig says:

    Jorge,  Thank you  for posting this poem.   Though fabric, wire, wood or plastic may protect one from Spring showers.  Shelter from the Storm should be stronger than the winds.  Happy Earth Day, and as ever be well.  Stephen Craig Rowe

  16. Fée says:

    A beautiful poem; to me, those umbrellas seem to be like thoughts …

  17. Lisa says:

    Chaos?  As in, it is meant to be differentiated from everyday, normal life?  It is not equal?  There\’s a thought.  Thanks for this poem, Jorge.  I always enjoy the pieces you share.

  18. Michele says:

    Im happy that you stopped in to say hello! Always good to meet a fellow lottiemae friend. Come back anytime! always at that site it seems as i paint a couple paintings a day 😛 Glad to have shared it with you..Best always. Michele

  19. LORI says:

    The poem is like the author is comparing the broken parts of his umbrella to the broken parts of himself…
    I loved this poem.

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