Beginnings

I am just now in the early

autumn of my life, the green

just now beginning to gray.

Exactly seven days ago I sat

with one of my oldest friends.

We both agreed our give-a-shit

is broke. It’s not that we don’t

care, for we do, deeply. It’s that

our to-care list has been culled.

We’ve seen life is blisteringly brief.

Once upon a time we cared about

Evangelicals, but not any longer.

We both care about poetry—he

refusing to cease his love affair

with the lady of Blackwater Pond

while I dance high-wire blind

without a net to the strains of the

one-eyed Mozart of the Prairie.

And we both give-a-shit about

living—this being particularly

poignant for my oldest friend

dying of pancreatic cancer,

his leaves already brittling,

slowly beginning their fall.

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10 Comments

  1. Marilyn Yocum on February 7, 2021 at 9:08 am

    Yes and yes. Just acknowledging all this.

  2. Duncan L Hilton on February 7, 2021 at 9:44 am

    Thank you so much for this poem, John!

  3. Patti on February 7, 2021 at 9:52 am

    I am so sorry for you and your friend. That road is a difficult one.
    Please know that your words touch my heart.

  4. Jim Work on February 7, 2021 at 11:19 am

    John, well said. There with ya….God spede…jw

  5. Deborah Nottingham on February 7, 2021 at 11:46 am

    So Good John. Please keep writing for yourself and us.

  6. Vince Crunk on February 7, 2021 at 12:41 pm

    High school English teachers always talked to us about symbols and meaning and such, but I usually never got it. If it doesn’t break any rules of poetic propriety, can you elaborate on this?

    “ … while I dance high-wire blind

    without a net to the strains of the

    one-eyed Mozart of the Prairie.”

    • John Blase on February 7, 2021 at 1:38 pm

      Hi, Vince. Sure, its a reference to Michigan poet Jim Harrison.

  7. Abby on February 7, 2021 at 2:10 pm

    Holding you with wide open heart. And, thank you, for giving voice to that deep joy and grief, and love.

  8. alice scott-fergsuon on February 7, 2021 at 4:58 pm

    Totally love it…trite and banal response, but I just plain LOVED IT!!!

  9. Judy Burke on February 8, 2021 at 9:35 pm

    John it is Judy how is your Dad? He does so much for so many as does your Mom – Hope she is better toThanks for allowing me the information.

    The Fall of life is full of gifts and the best is that closer to God and our loved ones.

    Thanks

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