Amy MacLennan © 2011 All Rights Reserved
Renewing Your Membership in Club One Another
* * *
My Message to Michael
In memory of Michael McGettigan (1956-2009)
Where does it say you have to play your cards
the way you played your horn? Where did it say
the road you’d walk would shrink to miles and yards
of first-class golf course holes up in Coos Bay?
I knew you when you spoke to me of songs
and dreams. Leave California. Settle down.
New Orleans was the place. A sad heart longs
to beat a whole new way—you heard its sound.
You played it all by ear, threw down your heart,
bartended nights; by day you owned the club.
Golf kept the wolf at bay. Golf let you start
again from scratch each day. Was this the rub?
Since when can’t life be one big hole-in-one?
Where did it say your hurt was yours alone?
Al Young’s many books include poetry, fiction, and musical memoir titles. From 2005 through 2008 he served as poet laureate of California. Other honors include NEA, Fulbright, and Guggenheim Fellowships. The Sea, The Sky, And You, And I, a poetry & jazz CD featuring bassist Dan Robbins, came out last year. He currently teaches at California College of the Arts, San Francisco. www.AlYoung.org
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