Family

Friend Poem No. 2

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I have a friend
Named Joseph
A nation-known legend
Brilliant at musical score.

Other people tell me this
But we rarely speak of it.

Sometimes we call each other
With good reason, too–
Busy, bustling business.

Only–he laughs too easily,
And then I do, too,
And we digress over and
Over and over
Into story upon story.

His grandmother once wrote
A television network
Because a man
(Louis Armstrong?)
Was broadcast
And he was perspiring.

My niece–
A determined and creative woman
with two years of life experience–
Is learning to sing of an
“Itsy bitsy SPIIIIII-BER!”

The stories come fast-
One over the other–
As we laugh and exclaim.

We both travel with only
As much luggage
As we can carry.

He loves Rome.
I do not.

I love parties.
He does not.

Once I told a mutual friend
That Joseph (an introvert)
Owed me too many favors
As it was.
(I am a demanding woman).

I said–I should do him a favor:
Not speak to him for three years.
Three years of solitude. And peace.

Alas.
I cannot.

Inevitably I have more questions,
Need more advice.

“Hello, Danielle,” he says.
“Hello, Joseph,” I say, “How are you?”

“I’m moderate,” he says.

Moderate.
What a way to answer.
I accept this, though–
It is his way.

“Listen,” I say, “I’m going to be blunt,
Like an old Italian man–
Want to respond in the same?”

And he will answer in kind,
Saying it is the only way he knows how.

This musical Italian gift to the world.
And me.
Undeserving as I am.
But grateful.

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2 thoughts on “Friend Poem No. 2

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