4th & 5th January, 2010



















Photo by Eric Yeager 2009 All Rights Reserved

A Thought for Today

We may not meet again within the coming year. Now is the time for us to take advantage of our started friendship - in all the best ways we know how and can learn about together.




We are passengers
on the same train.
Destinations far removed
             from one the other
but close enough that you
once entertained the though
of us arriving and stepping down
at the same stop,
               the self same station
from this vehicle
built for carrying
alike feelings, alike needs.

If the unseen, unknown conductor
               Is not known to you,
he is to me.
Beneath his guises and disguises
he is known to me as love.

Again I shake my guts out
             not so silently
and boast and brag of love.
If you are so engaged with echoes
it may seemingly come often to me.
I cannot say with certainly
                        that it’s not so,
but I will not demote, degrade
this aura, this event
     by any lesser name.

I love.
To what degree
this hour and this time
is of no importance.

I love you with what I am
and all I am as of this minute.
Not the hours ahead or yet to come.

Friends will say -
and if they do
then they are your friends
                no longer mine -
that I have loved before,
                   other places, other times.
And they may even circle
a certain calendar curriculum
and show you without doubt
that they are said to be
                     my lovers too.

I say doubt them.
Trust them not.
For I was not invented
            or thought up
until these recent minutes
that heaped atop each other
because these round, recent hours.

In truth
could I not
I would not love you.
I would choose the easy road.
Age has taught me, or I thought it had
how to discover, disguise, avoid anxiety.

It’s not so much that it is difficult
to love and not be loved, or even
                       that it holds no hope.
It is that the business of so doing
        is impractical and incomplete.
At best not being loved affords only
the luxury and latitude of self pity.

This time
there is some evidence
that knowing you or starting to
has made me better in a known
            and in some unknown way.

Ah, but we are greedy men
those of us who come to rest
                                            at last
on what we feel to be
                            our final, real love.

Better will not do.
We always want the best.
A taste of you has left an ache,
an opening for all the rest.

Passengers we are
traveling these same tracks
carried along by this same ribbon
                             of boardwalk.
All journeys end
or so we are told they should.

The destination looms,
is nearly in our sights.
Can you see it, feel it ?

Come closer one more time
and see it through my eyes
or stand behind me, hold on tight
and feel it through my shoulders
or feel it while I’m holding you.

There on the beach
beyond the boardwalk
two people stand
          looking into nothing.
Can’t you see them ?
There behind the snow fence
              where the track ends
some distance from each other.

One is holding little shells
and sea smooth rocks
gathered from some unnamed ocean.
The other’s hands are cupped
and filled with chips of colored glass
            retrieved from that same sea.

Side by side they’ve come
down the same much traveled beach.
And having journeyed for a time
           on the same train
each has loped or run
the distance necessary
to have learned all lessons
               worth the learning.

Now each is gone
beyond the boardwalk separately
                        not together
where something surely waits
and found that there was nothing.

- from “Beyond the Boardwalk,” 1975

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notable birthdays

Monday 4 January

Sorrell Booke o Louis Braille o Grace Bumbry o Dyan Cannon o Patrick Cassidy o Al "Jazbo" Collins o Everett Dirksen o Dave Foley o Matt Frewer o Tito Fuentes o Jacob Grimm o Sterling Holloway o Lionel Newman o Sir Isaac Newton o Julia Ormond o Floyd Patterson o Giovanni Battista Pergolesi o Barbara Rush o Don Shula o Charles "Tom Thumb" Stratton o Michael Stripe o Jesse White o Jane Wyman

Tuesday 5 January

Konrad Adenauer o Alvin Ailey o Jean-Pierre Aumont o Alfred Brendel o Juan Carlos I, King of Spain o Stephen Decatur o Jeanne Dixon o George Dolenz o Robert Duvall o Alberto Eco o Wilbert Harrison o Diane Keaton o Marilyn Manson o Pamela Sue Martin o Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli o Walter Mondale o Chuck Noll o Sam Phillips o Zebulon Pike o Cliff Potts o George Reeves o Charlie Rose o Konstantin Stanislavsky o Cora Witherspoon

Rod's random thoughts Life is not measured by the give and take; the only yardstick’s life itself.

The only time I come out the winner is when I race myself and pass the mark I’ve set before. The trophies I collect are smiles.

Life is worth living not so much for what it gives as what it suggests.

-from Nebraska Sonnets

Let us address the clouds again
Those soft gray-tinged unbleeding things
That cause the heart its wonderings.
They are the food of let’s pretend.
Fleece too good for best of men.
Their misty mountain offerings
Are saved, I think, to give to kings.
Still let us to them now attend.

Oh clouds, in your pale morning gowns
Tramped down by angel feet and spur
To tell of your unending rounds
Would cause the speech to stop and slur.
You bump and float and blunder by
As if there were no under sky.

- from “Suspension Bridge", 1984

1970, 1986, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2010 by Stanyan Music Group & Rod McKuen. All Rights Reserved
Webmaster: Ken Blackie Birthday Research by Wade Alexander Poems from the collection of Jay Hagan
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