Sunday, January 8, 2012


Editor's note: "Some folks don't believe in making resolutions, but I think overcoming my shortcomings begins with recognizing them," Dad wrote as the introduction to this poem. All I know is that there's no doubt I inherited the same gene.

We mortals have got
To suffer a lot
Of worry, hassle and strife;
We cannot attain
Exemption from pain,
For that is the essence of life.
Now, generally I
Am a good humor guy,
Hard knocks, I handle them fine;
But I must admit
I fester a bit
Any time that I stand in a line!

A checkout may go
In an orderly flow,
With nary a hitch or a fault;
But I'll guarantee,
With the entrance of me,
Everything will screech to a halt!
At times, I take heart,
As I chauffeur my cart,
And think I'm in excellent shape;
But then, up ahead,
Somebody drops dead,
Or a register runs out of tape!

I may carefully choose
The best line to use,
But the one I pick is a dud;
For reasons unknown,
My selection is prone
To move like a cow in the mud.
I surely agree
And acknowledge, to be
Considered a leader is fine;
But I caution you,
Whatever you do,
Never follow me in a line!

--Eighty After Eighty (1995)

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