It’s Good To Be A Country Poet

January 10, 2014

Somebody dun gone and made my life more complicated, again. Yeah, they gave me a Blake Shelton CD for Christmas, thanks Val, hubs step-mom. I listened to him singing about being country and what happened? Oh come ‘on, you know I drafted a few more poems for my book. Now I have to draw a line somewhere, the rest can go into the next book, which I even thought, yeah I think with that silly brain. How ’bout ‘Something About Being Country’. It’s settled.

The Sweet Life We’re Given

On the back porch
Momma would serve up
her famous sweet tea,
maybe a fresh squeezed lemonade
so much sugar you’d giggle.
Even the neighbors were invited.
The laundry would blow fresh
after we twisted and let the water
run down into the grass.

It was never just on Sunday
seems three kids dirty up more clothes
than our daddy could gather up
those wooden clothespins
from the garage lines.
Strung up over his old flat-bottom
we’d take down to the river
if there was energy
and time.

Was it the sitting in the sunshine
drinking up, eating everything
that came our way,
because we didn’t have much
at times— tomatoes and mayo
on cheap white bread,
sometimes melted Colby on saltines,
dodging stale cereal popped high
in the air
brought on laughs,
you just forgot what wasn’t there.

If someone told me we had nothing
there would be no argument
from my own kids,
it’s not because they aren’t grown
finding their own way
eating ramen off a hot plate
buying cheap beer
grilling hamburgers with their friends
every Saturday night.

One day they’ll remember it all;
how I squeezed ripe lemons
poured all the sugar into the pitcher
just like momma.
How even on bad days,
crisp towels hung out rock hard
to dry on cold days on the back rail;
we had more as a family, a sweet life sitting out
on the old porch
than emotionally down and out
rich folk do spreading dollar bills
off Rodeo Drive.

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