Before Girls

we would push our bikes up
the steep hills
then zoom down zig- zagging
like daredevils
wind in our face
drying out the butchwax
made to wear by dad
until we couldn’t roll any further

like a thousand screaming locusts
the maris mantle and mays
rookie cards clothes-pinned
to our spokes turning
our schwinns into
wannabe triumphs
old man smith would yell
as we flew by
you little dumb asses
was all we could make out
for that summer we were
the wild ones spitting
gnats from our teeth

10 Responses to Before Girls

  1. johemmant says:

    Really liked this…..especially the close.

  2. Bob says:

    Just brilliant… every male Boomer will love and relate to this. I still remember coming home from Boot Camp and finding out that my mom had thrown away my copy of Mantle’s rookie card (and a college education for all my children). I also loved the allusion to the Triumph… almost no one these days will understand the connotation. I think I like (and relate to) this more than anything else I’ve read. Thanks so much and Happy Father’s Day, Scot!

  3. Scot says:

    thanks for kind words–I gave mine away to a neighbor kid–dumb ass I guess.

  4. jojanoski says:

    From screaming locusts to gnats in your teeth, I love this!

  5. paisley says:

    what a moment blowing in the wind of childhood… oh how i do remember such fun… but i am not so sure i remember a time before boys played at least some part in the picture……

  6. Scot says:

    Thanks Jo for stopping in

  7. Julie says:

    This poem is awesome, as always! Do you have a book of poetry? I’d love to purchase it if you do.

    I saw a couple of kids yesterday sitting on a playground. They were text messaging other kids who weren’t there. They were about seven or eight. I wanted to show them how to play, but I was afraid somebody would call the cops. What a weird world.

    My generation is a bit after the Triumph, but I can still relate to the bike rides and child’s play. That’s the sign of a good poem. Even if I had never ridden a bike in my life, I would be flying down the hill with you. Excellent!

  8. Scot says:

    Thanks Julie for the kind words. Is a bit painful to see the kids today hang out as opposed to playing especially anything outside.
    I am working on some theme based chapbooks–nothing out on the market as yet,but in a few months–thanks for asking!

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