June 10, 2017

Three Poems by Richard L. Ratliff: "Old Man Waving," "Thursday Morning," and "Vince"

Richard L Ratliff is a baby boomer, born and raised in Indianapolis, Indiana, his midwest ties have built the foundation and setting for his poetry. He is a Purdue University graduate with two years of engineering turned into a degree in English Literature; along with being a two-year letterman in wrestling. All of these eclectic combinations have given him a career as a boiler and combustion expert and poet. He has two published books: "It’s About Time" and "3420: Backyard Conversations," both available on Amazon.

Old Man Waving

An old man waits for spring
When he can sit outside
In his green and white plaid lawn chair
Waving to the cars that pass
They wave back and for an instant
He has a connection ever so fleeting

His face lights up with each passing wave
Then fades again, he can't remember why
To all who see he's just a funny old man
But to him each wave lets him
Hang on to his mind if only for a moment

Thursday Morning

Morning comes now
With no alarm no razors edge
Splash of warm water and a brush
Yesterday's slacks are clean

Instant coffee then
Inhalers, pills and stool softener
Morning news, email and Facebook
Breakfast from the drive through

Trash is out at the curb
It must be Thursday
Unless yesterday was a holiday
Have to ponder this

Must exercise on the treadmill
Twenty minutes slow walk
Some days more some less
Just keep moving is a goal

Guess I'll work with words
At least for a while
Till its time
To get my poppy seeds
From television for the afternoon

Evening news
It is Thursday!
Better bring in the cans
Before harvesting the poppies
On tonight's cable


He was reporting for duty Monday
Vietnam awaited
We went looking for the ladies
At a party downtown

Vince might have been successful: don't know
Know we drank too much
How do I know?
Because I woke the next morning hugging a toilet

I was fortunate: bad hearing equals no draft
Vince, well he drew a short straw
And I never saw him again

Was touched in DC by the memorial
Sad I couldn't remember his last name
Guess I wasn't the best wingman

© Richard L. Ratliff

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