Sunday, June 27, 2010


Editor's note: Dad's been gone just over a year now -- he passed away last June 24. Reading through his books to choose poems for the blog turned up this one, which somehow seems perfect for this week. Memories can't take his place, of course, but I treasure them all the same.

The sands, we know,
Relentless, flow,
And, as the seasons pass,
Each golden grain
Will surely drain
Into the lower glass.

We cannot slack,
Nor hold it back,
Nor is it in our power
To take away
A single day,
Or add a single hour.

We'll never see
It come to be
That Time will turn in flight,
Thereby to give
Us to relive
A numbered day or night.

We can't command
The trickling sand,
But its passing we may ease,
If in its place
We've filled the space
With golden memories!

--Acres of Verse (1994)

Sunday, June 20, 2010


When I was a youth, and still in my prime,
As we used to say, full of Old Ned,
I remember the way we fellows went out
On the town, and painted it red.

We knew how the morning after would feel,
But very little difference it made;
We accepted the face as a matter of course,
The fiddler, he had to be paid.

We did it again each Saturday night,
Made whoopee till one, two or three;
Taking the view, the fun that we had
Was worth all the headaches to be.

A lot of water has gone over the dam,
Father Time has taken his due.
And now, I discover, I'm looking at things
From a slightly different view.

I hate to complain or be grumpy, although
I'll have to admit I deplore
That morning after feeling, when I
Have done nothing the evening before!

--Square Marbles (1978)

Sunday, June 13, 2010


Editor's note: "I have no doubt there are many very capable psychiatrists in the business of analyzing and treating mental disorders. It just happens the only two I ever knew seemed to be in need of a little help themselves," Dad wrote as the introduction to this poem.

Two psychiatrists, meeting one day,
Were chewing the fat in a casual way,
When suddenly one to his counterpart said,
"How would you like to examine my head?"
The other replied, "Now, that would be fine,
And while we're about it, you look at mine!"

Now I can't swear for certain it's true,
But the way I heard the story, these two
Shook hands on the spot and agreed, it appears,
To measure each other between the ears;
Undoubtedly thinking it would be nice
To have this exchange of expert advice.

So, Doc number one, as most patients do,
Relaxed on the couch of Doc number two;
Answering questions formed and designed
To expose the kinks in a tangled-up mind;
Then, Doc number two, his questioning done,
Was examined in turn by Doc number one.

So the two head-shrinkers applied their art,
And skillfully took each other apart;
Switching their doctor and patient roles,
They proved their minds and explored their souls,
And each one decided, no maybes or buts,
Beyond any question, the other was nuts!

--The Buckeye Poet (1991)

Saturday, June 5, 2010


Editor's note: "Sometimes the passing years play dirty tricks with the near-sacred objects of our most precious memories; or maybe it's just that our memories play tricks on us," Dad wrote as the introduction to this poem.

When I was in the second grade,
At Jackson Number Three,
A little girl in pigtails
Had the desk in front of me.

When she smiled in my direction,
Cupid shot another dart,
And put a perforation
In my palpitating heart!

But when she moved, and left us,
It's a most amazing fact
That somehow I survived it,
And my heart remained intact.

How oft, in reminiscing,
As the years dissolved away,
I wondered why she hadn't been
Declared Miss U.S.A.

To make my story shorter,
My great moment came at last,
When I met this little princess
I remembered from the past.

She had a mug as ugly
As a human face could be,
And a figure like that schoolhouse,
Where she sat in front of me!

--Acres of Verse (1994)