TOP SHELF

 

 

Sometimes I sell ‘em ten bucks at a time, but mostly
when I give ‘em away to friends, I tell ‘em
like I tole Baxter a few months after he signed
“Croutons on a Cowpie” for me years ago in Elko

where all the cowboy singers and poets meet
in the dead of winter, everbody huggin and shakin hands
like famly, new boots and silver glinting coin piled
in rooms like warm cocoons to listen, safe from the outside

news, just to sing and tell stories with roughshod poetry.
First time I went in ’89 to read my stuff I was skairt
until I run into Ramblin Jack who I hadn’t seen since ’66
at the Ashgrove, plumb skairt ever since Sunday school

stage plays screwed my face up so tight to where
I couldn’t say my lines. But seein Jack made ever thing
all right. Now that Baxter’s older, he understands
that it was a compliment, ‘specially since he’s a vet

and knows how the body sometimes works best
when the brain is busy with something else,
busy and out of the way of regular business.
I wrote to Baxter that I’d took his book off my desk,

pulled it out from under loose stacks of poetry
for my top shelf—so I mean it when I tell ‘em
my poems are mostly short and will work best
if you take and leave ‘em in the bathroom.

               for George Perreault and “Bodark County”

 

 

BODARK COUNTY

 

6 responses to “TOP SHELF

  1. Great sentiment John.

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

    Like

  2. Hmm. Think I’ll disagree with short poems as t.p. though in a pandemic pinch, I suppose anything is possible.

    Like

  3. Thanks for the appreciation, John.

    Like

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