The old man appears comfortable in his chair,
Fireplace aglow in the crowded parlor,
His demeanor simulating an almost sleep.
Removed from his reverie by the sound of his name.
He ascends the podium to mild applause.
Papers in hand, his props.
Stories told a hundred times
In poetry and prose
Submit to memory
Refusing to be contained.
Each rendition given new life.
Peaks and valleys
Released on new horizons.
Awaiting the canvass
About to be displayed.
Captain, he takes his passengers on a journey
To heights above the clouds
The air clean and inviting
Ripe for proclamations
About to flow.
That pleasure is fleeting and singular
Pain is indelible and shared by all.
That a closed door cannot prevent love from entering
Hate enters only by invitation.
That “over the top” has a place“under the table”
Final destination – “out the door.”
That quality of life is a perception not exclusive to the wealthy
Less than have a rightful claim.
That man who knows not himself
Has no home.
That to have loved and lost
Belongs to another poet.
That a little humor makes a rough road smoother
Than no humor at all.
With that, the old man relinquishes the floor
Measuring success by the nod of heads
Rather than obligatory applause.
He retreats to the comfort of his chair
Ready and willing for the next journey.
The Summer Gazebo Readings are held each Monday evening at 7pm in June, July & August. Each evening 4-5 authors and poets share their work from our Gazebo on Schoolhouse Green in Oceanside, NY. SGR is produced by the Kiwanis Club of Oceanside. Funds raised through sponsorships help send underprivileged kids to Kamp Kiwanis each summer. This summer marks our 7th season!