Hello, old flame—
Is it time to relight dead embers?
And are your eyes green or blue,
Asks the one who never remembers?
And do you remember when
We sunburned on Sandbridge Beach,
Searching for a lifelong love
That was always so far out of reach?
One of us sailed away;
The other went back to school.
Luckily you had escaped
A life with this poor old fool.
And why do we always reframe
The errors of our youthful past?
Now so older and wiser,
We know nothing can so long last
As the longing for sure arms;
Or someone to chase the dark cloud.
But, it seems to be my lot
That that someone I’m not allowed.
So, I guess I have to ask:
Do you even remember my name?
Because here I come a-calling—
Hello, old flame.
The candle sputtered
Then guttered out
The wick a speck in the wax
The old poet looked
And suffered to stand up
The last present wrapped was Jack’s
A fresh Christmas candle
Striped Santa red and holly green
With its new flame warmed the room
Placing presents about
A tree to shame Charlie Brown
The shards of wrapping left with the broom
The cat’s tail flicked serene
The poet reached for his quill
As words soft filled a new page
A chance Winter memory
Spurred the poet on
Thoughts neither steep nor very sage
She bought him skis for a gift
Though “cross” country would mean something else
Tears of laughter with every tumble and spill
He wondered where she was now
A score of years have long passed
When meeting on Concourse B was such the piquant thrill
Chinese Five Spices
Floated upon the solemn merlot
The poet paused to let the tightness pass
Tomorrow the two-state drive
Back to his beloved Crescent City
Though this year without his own wee lass
Daughter would be skiing
Off out with her Mother and half family
Cross country over in the mountain West
He’d be with swiftly aging brother
And a Christmas with the family Creole
But things always work out for the best
A meow and a sigh
The poet let Jack out the door
A cat in search of secret nocturnal meetings
The candle blew out neat
The cold front had as promised arrived
As the rain pelted out its Season’s Greetings
Waxing and waning here came Christmas Number Sixty-two
But he yet looked ahead brightly through this Yuletide in Blue
Now I’ve become old
Time has passed and taken hold
Down to the plain nitty gritty
From now on things won’t be so pretty
At least that’s what I’m told
Now I’m taken ill
The future promises a different thrill
Taken to bed feeling low
No one speaks about how this’ll go
Where did I file that Living Will?
Now the days have grown dark
What once was passion is the barest spark
Take my things I need them no more
I’ve deeper mysteries ahead to explore
Sprinkle the remains across Audubon Park
Now I lay me down to slee….
Dar haint enuf chock cake
Ice cream ner gran marneha
to get me to stop missing you
The sweetness of just you is just
Too much to bear for just one day.
Dar haint enuf ours
Yours and all odat
To get me next to you
The empty of whar you was still is
Too cold for coals to make hat
So gib me more odat
Crimson glasses of some vine cold
To close all mine eyes on you
Perchance to dream of a new one else
To love befo I’m git old
long, long ago the warmth of your touch faded away
and all other memories all scramble the same,
your’s has drifted into a far pale grayscale
and now I cannot remember your name.
there was something about a Tuesday parade,
beads filled the crisping Southern air,
babies snored atop their ladders
and everyone had properly ceased to care;
but I remember you, behind that mask,
my forever lover who’d never flash your chest
just to woo Mardi Gras beads and doubloons:
o, my love burned hot for you in my breast.
then, your crowd moved off to the Quarter;
and I, left there without a dime to my name,
dragged it on across the Avenue to go on home
and things returned to a faded everday same.
as scripted, we agreed that it was for the best,
but today, I facebooked and googled so very hard
trying to re-refind what was long totally so lost;
tomorrow, turning sixty: what, a birthday card?
“age is just a number:” that’s what they say;
o, the hell with it: Laissez le bon temps roulez!
Love and Sex and chocolate coconut ice cream cakes,
But, sweet little momma, that’s not at all what it takes
To keep me intrigued and glued next to you,
And I bet you haven’t got the slightest clue—
Hand in hand you silently listen to my silly wannabe poems:
The warm attention matters much more than a hand that roams;
And the walks thru our neighborhood, pensive and royal
While sharing the road with bushy-tailed tree rats keeps me loyal
To the witty little brown-tressed smartly aging hippy goddess,
Though I must confess I adore how you majestify that skirted dress.
Back home we Cajun, cavort, zydeco, and swing, then waltz—
Sharing a trite wine we talk talk talk as the ringing laughter never halts.
We go together to Yorkshire and the playoffs and follow the Doctor.
Remember study hall with that mirthless lazy upperclassman proctor?
You showed me how to find the stupid area under the curve,
As I developed an image to kiss you, but never had the nerve.
Now we laugh at our grays and ponder richly the latest wrinkle,
[But you could spare me those raised eyebrows when I try to go tinkle.]
The sun approaches the far horizon and together we’ll learn
How the endtimes will play out for the likes of we old lovers in turn.
Thank you for the Together, the Love, and the Let’s See What Tomorrow Brings;
Can’t wait for our next day and the hundred million little pay attention things.
Hey, let’s go write our names on the beach,
Just don’t ever be too far out of reach,
Loving you is all it ever takes—
Yes, I did say chocolate coconut ice cream cakes!
The stout little candle flickered its last
And scuttered out and left the oldster in the dark
He thought he’d attempt the 15th century
And imagine a time of dragons, for a lark
The safety matches safely lit a new wick
And the poet lifted his quill again
Skritter scratch and his lines pricked to life
Another damsel rejects a lonely swain
Refilling the merlot-stained glass
The oldess sat next to her oldster
The muse again amused, the poet grinned
Wishing he hadn’t sold that roadster
Gray hairs and faded eyes
But a mind keen as ever
Maybe he can’t drive
But his lines still tickle clever
Half-passed a candle later
The oldess kissed her oldster
The poet abandoned his quill
Surely, later those lines he’d bolster
Later, the stout little candle flickered its last….
The spry old gentleman returned from the house
All was quiet, as still as that storied old grey mouse
He retrieved a gift that he’d almost forgotten
A GPS to distinguish between New Haarlem and New Groton
Seems his wry memory had been always quite dandy
But an electronic aid sure would’ve been handy
Like when he overshot the turn to land in New South Wales
[And his antlered friends had hid their red faces in their tales]
But the handheld device now could lead him onto Timbuctoo
[Even if the big-headed red-nosed one was so positive what to do]
But this year was different and that’s only because
The old one at last heeded the words of Mrs. Claus:
“You can’t always be sure whether to go left or the right.
Please, Dear, use that GPS gizmo on this snowy winter night.”
So, the old gent climbed aboard his magnificent old Nordic sled
And bellowing aloud, this is something like what he said:
“On, Comet! on, Cupid! on, Donder and Blitzen!
We got hot cocoa made by Mama awaitin’ in the kitchen!”