Unflappable

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Apocalyptic Bebop Grin – Acrylic on stained particle board. Artwork and text copyright Danny Grosso

It was almost unnerving

if one could let oneself be

unnerved

back then

when the miners were striking in Britain

and the homeless were sleeping on steam grates in New York

that he kept laughing

giving that awe shucks grin

while the worlds spun around him

almost out of control

like those plates spinning on sticks at the circus

above a guy with a straw hat and a striped vest

yet still he showed his dimples

and we scrounged for extra funds

to pay the gas bill or the mortgage

or both

holding our nerves in check

hoping he could do the same

as he joked on the radio about bombing the Russians

and while he contemplated the umpteenth cease fire in Lebanon

where the cedars reminded me of his later face

wrinkled and gnarled

and bent

and he would laugh

give that awe shucks grin

and the bark would disappear

while he stood next to Maggie

all that molded hair

looking like wax candy

looking young again

looking alien to the times

when music was changing

and viruses mutating

our nerves were fraying

and he would

laugh.

 

Danny Grosso

 

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