My Mother Taught Me Songs


Here is a song from my youth: I am 22, living in Victoria, British Columbia, and I pen this song.

 

My mother taught me songs
I poured to ladies
on breezy afternoons.

I had them all crying,
I was told
– those Italian matrons
with the buttocks –
I was the perfect poet;
the darling of the gardens.

On the greensward,
beneath the leaves rustling
like a thousand little fans,
I gave summer concerts
– endless concerts –
and the tears shed for me
I gathered in vials
for harder times

                                     (I knew even then
                                     a poet cannot live
                                     on poems alone.)

I thought the tears
would fall forever
from those gracious ladies
– but eyes wrinkle…
and songs,
they wrinkle too.

Now I am a man…
my vials stand empty.

I do not remember
                                       the old songs,
and I haven't made anyone
cry
for years:                          

                                        mother.
                                        o mother.
                                        teach me new songs.

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3 thoughts on “My Mother Taught Me Songs

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