I’ve lived long enough

by June 30, 2024 0 comments

that the guitar pickers of my youth rest
one by one on stools at B.L. Otto’s Bar of Oblivion
where there’s always a band auditioning
above the chatter and glass break.

Usually they sit facing the mirror,
watching the barkeep’s towel swish around
but if the band ratchets it up a notch
some of them might swivel
and note the drummer who sounds like two
or the singer, dark hair and eye shadow,
her voice a rust belt river in full moan.

I have friends who’ve outlived children
and some whose grown up kids
don’t return calls or e-mail or text messages;
who won’t acknowledge a birthday card
or congratulations on your new baby.

Maybe when they pass on to the next stop
they’ll shake some of those string stroking hands,
say which songs were favorites,
and before they ask for autographs,
Otto will remind them
everyone’s here to have a good time.

Someday those kids might cross through
the batwing doors, too, mosey
down past mirrored walls and gleaming bottles
stacked ceiling high,
maybe even offer to buy Dad a drink.

editors note:

A drink is plenty welcome, just a “How’s things?” is welcome more. – mh clay

Leave a Reply