Pass or Fail

A Twenty Minutes poem.

Pass or Fail

The telephone rings
two floors below you
and you waver
A breakneck dash down the steps
or stand here
listening to it ring
until it stops
It’s a test of personality
Who can withstand the summons
and who cannot
interesting thought
and suddenly you decide to answer
Feet clattering on the bare wood stairs
over the ringing
that stops just when you lift the receiver

Telephone Poles


8 thoughts on “Pass or Fail

  1. We lived in a house where the phone was on the first floor and getting to it from the third was – challenging. I eventually just let the darn thing handle its problems itself and stayed where I was!

  2. I have gotten rid of the landline but I also set the phone down in the house and don’t carry it around, and even when I have it I keep it turned off. So maybe that is the new version of this phone thing? In the poem I was remembering in our old house, the phone was on the first, my studio on the 3rd. Phone did not get much attention then, either.

  3. I hate the phone and I keep mine turned off. This poem comes from and earlier time when we had the one phone on the first floor and a three floor house. I let it ring a lot then, too. I have no problem ignoring it!

  4. This poem takes me back to when we lived in a 3 floor house and the phone on the first floor. After a while I just let it ring because I could never get there. Finally we got an extension upstairs. Big help.

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