THIS IS HOW LIFE FEELS WHEN YOU GET TO BE MY AGE

Written by: Sidney Beck

THIS IS HOW LIFE FEELS WHEN YOU GET TO BE MY AGE

I have a general philosophical  precept
Life is in general a bowl of cherries except 
When someone stabs me in the back who didn’t oughta
From a completely unexpected quarter
I mean it’s ok if some dude whom I don’t like or trust
Has a go at me and feels he must
But if my wife tells me I continually bug her with my fidgets 
And then she  runs off with a team of one-legged circus midgets
Or my kids sell their hand-bound volumes of my poems
To buy a ton of horse manure to mix with the garden loams
And even the cat turns down my offer of warm milk
To go next door and sleep on sheets of silk
Or if a poetry contest excludes me simply because my name 
Is unacceptable, maybe because I am black, or lacking in fame, 
Or because I’m Methodist, and  gay, and Republican, and from  East Lansing,
Then I say to myself, well  here’s the thing:
If, along with my poem entry, I’ve  slipped in fifty bucks,
Well then  how can I be excluded?  I mean shucks  -
Rules is rules but when I’ve already paid to be in the winners’ list
I feel I have the right,  and  I just gotta insist,  
Cos midgets and fidgets don’t amount to squat
And sheets of silk or loads of horse manure is a lot
But  my name’s my pride and joy and I am proud to add it
(But I fear to do it again in this contest or I’ve had it),
So in this contest I will remain anonymous
Though I guess the details writ here are just about synonymous 
With a name  I do not dare speak  - at risk of exclusion
But I’m pretty sure this extra fifty bucks will lessen the confusion.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Written  - with great affection -  for
Nancy Jones's   Contest 	"This is how life feels when you get to be my age..."