Last week’s poem was somewhat serious, so I am lightening the tone this week. This is another poem written – or at least put into a somewhat final form – on my November writing retreat to Goodhart, on Northern Lake Michigan. The poem stems from a time when Playboy Magazine was as naughty as a boy could imagine . . . and now we have the internet. Feel free to join me in a wistful sigh.
WHEN EUGENE MOVED (Cleveland, 1963) Eugene told us he would leave his Playboys when his family moved, forbidden treasure he promised to hide in the house down the street. Having been practically invited, my brother and the neighborhood boys boosted me through the milk chute and I opened the side door so the whole gang could go inside. The enormity of our crime - nice boys don't break into homes in search of naked ladies - set in quickly so we looked around perfunctorily for a minute or two tho’ none of us dared descend the basement stairs, where we agreed it most likely Eugene had stashed his cache. Suddenly something spooked us and we ran back out through the door yelling as if the Devil were chasing us and - given our transgressions - perhaps he was. So it’s possible Eugene’s Playboys are disintegrating with age on top of the ductwork in the darkest part of that basement on Belvoir Boulevard but it’s also possible – likely, I now think – that Eugene’s Playboys were never there at all.
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A New Poem Every Monday
(though sometimes life gets in the way)
Joseph Neely, all rights reserved except for Playboy logo