Sunday, November 14, 2010


Editor's note: "I'm sure we all sometimes recognize a person with whom we are not acquainted, and are also acquainted with some we don't really know," Dad wrote as the introduction to this poem.

I chanced to meet an acquaintance
While strolling, one autumn day,
And each of us said, "Good morning,"
And went on his merry way.

It wasn't in any way different
Than what we had done before;
We'd greeted and passed each other
On a hundred occasions or more.

But I'd never shortened my sail
Or paused for a second look;
As goes the old country saying,
We'd howdied, but never had shook.

I knew where he lived on the corner,
With a vacant lot out behind,
But what he did for a living
Had never entered my mind.

"A mighty find fellow," I pondered,
As his name I tried to recall,
Then I realized, all of a sudden,
That I hardly knew him at all!

So I vowed to learn more about him,
And the hand of a neighbor extend;
I found it well worth the effort --
My acquaintance became my friend!

I learned a valuable lesson,
And I have this moral to tell;
If a man's worth knowing at all,
He's certainly worth knowing well!

--The Buckeye Poet (1991)

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