Poem of the Week 66

The Millennium Falcon

 

Roger Stevens

 

 

Okay

I know

You’re right

It doesn’t look much

A plastic tube

Metallic paint, some wood, some wire

But it’s the Millennium Falcon

Spaceship for hire

 

It’s been travelling the universe

For five years and a day

And it was built by granddad

Before he passed away

 

Okay

I know

You’re right

It doesn’t look much

Metallic paint, some wire, some wood

But it fought and beat the Empire

For the forces of good

 

And now upon my bedroom shelf

It’s found its final rest

I know it doesn’t look much

But in its day it was the best

Advertisements

Poem of the Week 65

I’m Still Here

 (from ‘Follies’)

Stephen Sondheim

  

Good times and bum times,

I’ve seen them all, and, my dear,

I’m still here.

 

Plush velvet sometimes,

sometimes just pretzels and beer,

But I’m here.

 

I’ve stuffed the dailies in my shoes,

Strummed ukuleles, sung the blues.

Seen all my dreams disappear,

But I’m here.

 

I’ve slept in shanties,

Guest of the W.P.A.,

But I’m here.

 

Danced in my scanties,

Three bucks a night was the pay,

But I’m here.

 

I’ve stood on bread lines with the best,

Watched while the headlines did the rest.

In the depression was I depressed?

Nowhere near.

I met a big financier,

And I’m here.

 

I’ve been through Gandhi,

Windsor and Wally’s affair,

And I’m here.

 

Amos ‘n’ Andy,

mah-jongg and platinum hair,

And I’m here.

 

I got through Abie’s Irish Rose,

Five Dionne babies, Major Bowes,

Had heebie-jeebies for Beebe’s Bathysphere.

I got through Shirley Temple,

And I’m here

 

I’ve gotten through Herbert and J. Edgar Hoover;

Gee, that was fun and a half!

When you’ve been through Herbert and J. Edgar Hoover,

Anything else is a laugh.

 

I’ve been through Reno,

I’ve been through Beverly Hills,

And I’m here.

 

Reefers and vino,

rest cures, religion and pills,

And I’m here.

 

Been called a “pinko-commie tool,”

Got through it stinko by my pool.

I should’ve gone to an acting school,

that seems clear.

Still, someone said, “She’s sincere,”

So I’m here.

 

Black sable one day,

next day it goes into hock,

But I’m here.

 

Top billing Monday,

Tuesday you’re touring in stock,

But I’m here.

 

First you’re another sloe-eyed vamp,

Then someone’s mother, then you’re camp;

Then you career from career to career.

I’m almost through my memoirs,

And I’m here.

 

I’ve gotten through “Hey, lady, aren’t you whoozis?

Wow, what a looker you were.”

Or better yet, “Sorry, I thought you were whoozis;

Whatever happened to her?”

 

Good times and bum times,

I’ve seen ’em all, and, my dear,

I’m still here.

 

Plush velvet sometimes,

sometimes just pretzels and beer,

But I’m here.

 

I’ve run the gamut, A to Z;

Three cheers and, dammit, c’est la vie.

I got through all of last year,

And I’m here.

 

Lord knows, at least I’ve been there,

And I’m here.

Look who’s here.

I’m still here.

Poem of the Week 64

The Book

Michael Rosen

 

 I opened a book

and a hand fell out.

I turned a page

and heard a shout:

‘I’m lost in a wood;

my mother’s no good.’

I couldn’t bear to look

so I closed the book.

 

But the girl called out:

‘Don’t leave me here;

I need you to help me.’

I was cold with fear

so the book stayed shut.

I put it back on the shelf;

put it out of my mind

but then –

it opened itself.

Right there in front of me

it opened up wide

and I heard a voice say,

‘Come inside.’

 

The hand that fell out

jumped back in the book,

the girl inside

gave me a long, cool look

and before I knew it

I was in that wood,

running and running

as fast as I could,

running and running

as fast as I could,

running and running

as fast as I could …

Poem of the Week 63

For the Fallen

Robert Laurence Binyon

 

With proud thanksgiving, a mother for her children,

England mourns for her dead across the sea.

Flesh of her flesh they were, spirit of her spirit,

Fallen in the cause of the free.

 

Solemn the drums thrill: Death august and royal

Sings sorrow up into immortal spheres.

There is music in the midst of desolation

And a glory that shines upon our tears.

 

They went with songs to the battle, they were young,

Straight of limb, true of eye, steady and aglow.

They were staunch to the end against odds uncounted,

They fell with their faces to the foe.

 

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:

Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.

At the going down of the sun and in the morning

We will remember them.

 

They mingle not with their laughing comrades again;

They sit no more at familiar tables of home;

They have no lot in our labour of the day-time;

They sleep beyond England’s foam.

 

But where our desires are and our hopes profound,

Felt as a well-spring that is hidden from sight,

To the innermost heart of their own land they are known

As the stars are known to the Night;

 

As the stars that shall be bright when we are dust,

Moving in marches upon the heavenly plain,

As the stars that are starry in the time of our darkness,

To the end, to the end, they remain.