Wednesday, January 15, 2014

"best of" poem of the day 01.15.14

no one wins

the old timer
the one who used
to sit next to you
almost every night
watching jeopardy
and complaining about the jukebox

who raised the ire
of the staff of bartenders
for nursing one beer
and not tipping
whose collection
of nelson demille novels
lines the back wall
of this joint

has been holed up
in a vet’s hospital for two weeks

turns out
that he was homeless
his vendor license expired
and taken back by
this unforgiving city

didn’t sell anything
the other drunks said
when they told me

he just sat there
and collected a fee from
the foreign bootleggers

no one knows
if he’s doing well or not

no one cares

but jeopardy isn’t on the tv
and the jukebox is ripping tonight
jazzy jeff downs his beer
and announces to all gathered
that there are two types of women
in this world

bitches and whores

and the newspapers agree with him
today the times told me
that the tears of women
are a turn- off to men

i look at my wife
and wish that i could take her
somewhere better
to get drunk on a wednesday night

yet again
no one wins

it’s hard to sit here
thinking about john
the tears of women
and the world

letting my secret fear run wild

the one where these cretins get up
and lock the door to the bar
make my wife and i pay
for not being regulars here since birth

it’s hard to sit here
and think about all of the loss
that it takes
just to make up a single day

it’s better to turn your head
toward the television
tap a foot to the music
agree with jazzy jeff
and not think a single thought about
poor john

wait for someone to score
in the game that’s playing on mute

cheer along with everyone
when the winning team does it

safe with the knowledge
that even the best of the best
drop one-third of their games
a season.


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