Growing Up on West Hill Road ‘A’
Father was a violent drunk, we called him Daddy
he swore like the WWII Navy sailor that he was
brother Mike lean, Peter a heavyweight, me a fatty
Mother was a pillar of strength, good thing she was.
All five of us kids were born by Caesarean section
in St. Joseph’s Hospital in Elmira upstate New York
we learned right and wrong under Daddy’s direction
Mother taught love & kindness, use of knife and fork.
Daddy called us boys halfwits, the girls were angels
Mary’s looks favored our French side, Ellie the Dutch.
We all played down by the creek in burdock tangles
for Christmas and birthdays we never got too much.
We had many happy times growing up on West Hill
Mother cooked great food, growing up was real thrill.
I am Past I have Passed I’m Out
I am past, I have passed, I’m out and about
Many dear old friends are dead and gone too
I am a memory of myself without a doubt
Thoughts coming and going out of the blue
Like old lovers and funerals happy and sad
Yet they are all gone like the morning dew
“into the nothingness” of former old times *
Into a Philippine Sea of sinigang dreams
Where senior memories sing simple rhymes
Of lovely days my heart and soul esteems
My dear Tinian students and their parents
I love the best alas many now gone to rest
Dreams of Tinian cliffs where I’ve slept
Loving memories in my heart I’ve kept.
*Phrase from John Clare (1793 – 1864)
“Into the nothingness of scorn and noise
Into the living sea of waking dreams.”
Joey ‘Pepe Batbon’ Connolly (Special to the Saipan Tribune)
Joey aka Pepe Batbon is a retired educator who taught in the CNMI, NOLA, and LVNV. He is a sonnet practitioner who enjoys stargazing.