Sunday, May 29, 2011


Editor's note: Since this is class reunion time, I thought this poem would be appropriate. I don't know about you, but the older I get, the more this happens to me)!

Your face is real familiar,
But I can't recall your name,
My mem'ry's kinda foggy,
But I know you, just the same!

In fact, it's right remarkable
That we should meet this way,
For I've been thinkin' 'bout you,
It was only yesterday.

I said to Lucy, "Honey,
it's a doggone dirty shame
I haven't kept in touch with
My old buddy, what's 'is name!"

It sure is nice to see you,
After all these years again;
Let's have a cup of coffee,
And tell me, how've you been?

Father Time has been real kind
To you, it's plain to see;
It seems you haven't changed a bit
From what you used to be!

I'd know you anywhere, because
You still look just the same;
Your face is sure familiar,
But I can't recall your name!

--Square Marbles (1978)

Sunday, May 22, 2011


Editor's note: "My hat's off to graduating seniors," Dad wrote as the introduction to this poem. "I can even forgive them for being a little bit cocky. History repeats."

Looking back from later life,
On my emerging phase,
I marvel now, how bright I was,
In my adolescent days.

When just a toad-head youngster,
Hardly dry behind the ears,
I felt I'd grown in wisdom,
Far beyond my tender years.

Before I'd finished high school,
I was sure I had it made;
There couldn't be much more to learn,
Beyond eleventh grade!

And, after graduation,
For at least a year or so,
There wasn't any question,
I knew all there was to know.

I haven't suffered memory loss,
To any great extent;
But yet, I wonder, now and then
Where all that wisdom went!

I'd be the shrewdest pundit
Anyone has ever seen,
If I were half as smart today
As I was at seventeen!

--Eighty After Eighty (1995)

Sunday, May 15, 2011


Editor's note: "Any way you look at it, happiness is a stopping place between having too little of something and having too much," Dad wrote as the introduction to this poem.

Happiness has been defined
A thousand ways, I guess,
And just as many given how
To find it, more or less.

Happiness is how it is
When everything's okay;
Not how it was a week ago,
But how it is today.

It may be only fleeting,
Or it may go on and on;
It's often-times elusive --
Now you have it, now it's gone!

It's not a destination,
Or a goal that you can set;
The more you try to gather in,
The less you're apt to get.

It isn't something you can see
Inside a crystal ball;
It may be late in coming,
Or it may not come at all!

Happiness is better shared
With others, for it's known
That hardly ever anyone
Enjoys it all alone.

Sow little seeds of happiness,
And that is what you'll reap;
The more you try to spread around,
The more you get to keep!

Hominy Grits (1986)

Sunday, May 8, 2011


Editor's note: "Sometimes it seems our luck has run out and we might as well toss in the sponge," but that's not the way to win a ball game," Dad wrote as the introduction to this poem.

What in the world can a poor man do
When his losses are many and his gains
Are few?
How can a fellow continue to hope,
When he's just about to the end of
His rope?

How can the poor guy carry his load
While pushing uphill on a rocky road,
Fighting ahead, to gain no more
Than what he already had before?

How can he hold his chin up high,
And keep a determined gleam in his eye,
While trying harder, only to find
He keeps on getting further behind?

It's easy to falter, and a great many
But a few press on to the top of the hill;
For this is the method that life employs
While separating the men from the boys!

Records of history demonstrate well
The proof of the story I'm trying to tell;
The ones who win all the marbles and stuff
Are those who hang on when the going is

So, don't knuckle under, no matter what,
Give it the very best you have got;
Set your sights on a distant star, --
You're never licked till you think you

--Acres of Verse (1994)

Sunday, May 1, 2011


Editor's note: "Everyone knows the dollar has been shrinking at an alarming rate, so it's not surprising to see a new dollar coin resembling a quarter," Dad wrote as the introduction to this poem. "Since it will buy about twenty-five cents worth of stuff, maybe its size is fitting. If it's going to act like a quarter, it might as well look like one."

Our economy's surely
A matter of great
Concern all over the nation;
Most folks are having
Trouble today
Keeping up with inflation.

My Lucy contends
We're falling behind,
No reason have I to dispute her;
So I took all my figures
Down to the bank,
And ran 'em thru their computer.

The monster came up
With an answer of sorts,
So quickly it ain't even funny:
We could pay fifty
Percent of our bills
With ninety percent of our money!

--Autumn Acres (1982)