Now's as Good a Time to Start as Any -- BOTH Audio and Text
Listen to poem:
Gaylord Laryngitis was a monstrous human being.
They say he weighed…at ten years old…at least 400 pounds,
But standin’ 6 foot 7…and because he exercised…
he actually didn’t look real “fat”…despite the way it sounds.
They also say he had a heart as big as San Francisco.
Now that part, far as I’m concerned, is easier to believe,
‘Cause back when I was twelve years old, and Dad was thirty-five,
he sat me down and told me ‘bout a chilly New Year’s Eve
On which this Laryngitis kid was joggin’ ‘round the shoreline
of Lake Episcopalian when he heard some feller yell.
Seems this here young feller - who was skatin’ in the moonlight –
while tryin’ to do a pirouette had thrown a skate an’ fell!
The ice was not real thick that year and sure enough it broke…
turned out this here skater was a pretty good sized guy.
With no one else around to notice, Gaylord knew right off
that if he didn’t find a way to save him…he would die!
Well…the story made the paper, and the man he saved that evening
testified profusely he was close to bein’ dead
When Gaylord slid up close enough to grab him by the wrist, then peeled
his coat off, threw it down, and used it like a sled
To drag him to the shoreline - which was sixty yards away –
then picked him up an’ carried him for close to half a mile
To Juan Bertelli’s Deli - where they sat and talked for hours –
discussing things that each of them was proud of all the while.
“I’m proud as hell I saved your life,” a beaming Gaylord crowed,
“without first askin’ who you were…or…..who you voted for!
And even after learning - through our talk - you’re from a country
with whom - since I was nine years old - my nation’s been at war…
“I’m tickled pink to ‘ve saved your butt…and - had things been reversed -
I’m absolutely certain you’d have done the same for me.
Despite our many differences, we need to work things out,
while understanding - there’ll be things on which we disagree -
“‘Cause if we work together - and achieve the right solutions -
hopefully, in time, we’ll do away with needless wars!
And now’s as good a time to start as any - don’t you think…
for me to work with friends of mine -
and you…with friends of yours?
“Well, that night marked,” my Dad went on, “the moment his opinion
of people from America was changed from one of hate
to knowing most, by far, are just like them - down deep inside…
and guided by - from that day on - the telling hand of fate -
“Aamir and Gaylord both became involved in social issues,
helping one another with political campaigns.
Today they’re fighting side by side in Washington DC,
and…working hard together, they have made some major gains.
“They’ve done their best to focus on improving the relations
between the Muslim countries and the U.S. - best they can…
and all who learn how close they are are puzzled by their friendship
‘cause Gaylord is a Texan…and Aamir is from Iran!
Well…now you the facts about what molded these two fellas,
pushing them toward what they do today by changing laws.
Goes to show how much a pair of people can accomplish
by teaming up together for a worthy common-cause.
Gaylord - in his second term’s - a Senator from Texas!
Aamir, his long time Muslim friend - whose life he saved - now chairs
what helps them work on changes that will serve to keep the peace -
he heads the – “U. S House Committee on Foreign Affairs”!
This story Father told me…‘bout the monstrous kid from Texas…
was meant, I’m sure, to help me see that…when we do what’s right…
rewards for having done so can completely change our lives,
the way it did for those two guys that January night.
They met by pure coincidence…today their best of friends,
and saving lives, many lives, has been their only goal,
and I would say that “now’s as good a time to start as any”,
for each and every one of us to play some sort of roll
In bringing those together who would otherwise believe
that no one from another country’s welcome in their land.
Nothing could be farther from the truth, and it’s now crucial
that everyone who truly cares comes forth and takes a stand.
PS: I've now got 4 new Audio-CDs - @ 4 1/2 hours each = (62 diversely varied pieces). They’re listed on EBAY - under - “Mark Stellinga Poetry” - or available by simply contacting me at -- email@example.com -- should those of you who enjoy listening to poems as well as reading them - and particularly those of you that travel - care to be so entertained. (We use safe and simple - PayPal) There are a bunch of my pieces on YouTube as well ---
Copyright © Mark Stellinga | Year Posted 2021
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