Sunday, April 10, 2005


Today’s contribution for National Poetry Writing Month is a poem that also works as a country song. Anybody interested in contributing music and cutting a demo, please feel free to contact me at elisson1 (at) aol (dot) com.

When Mama Died
(All I Got Was the Double-Wide)

I’ve never known an easy way of livin’
Had to sweat and bust my butt for years and years
But you know I’ve never thought it’s right to give in
To heartbreak, with all its pain and tears.

When things looked bad, I listened to my Mama
She always knew exactly what to say
To help me deal with hurt and pain and trauma,
Lift my spirit up to face another day.

My Mama said to always hold my head up
And shoulder all my burdens with a smile
When your back’s against the wall, no time to let up
That’s when you’ve got to go the extra mile.

Well, Mama never was no Rockefeller -
Her trailer home was all she had for wealth.
She never had two cents to rub together,
But what the hell, at least she had her health.

And then one day, she went to see the doctor
“I’m feelin’ a mite poorly,” ’s what she said.
He ran some tests, and told her she had cancer,
And then, inside of six months, she was dead.

My Mama said to always hold my head up, etc.

Oh, Mama, now what did your suff’rin’ get you?
A hole that’s six feet down and lined with dirt
In fifty years, your grandkids will forget you
Thank Gawd you’ll be stone-dead, so it won’t hurt.

And what have I to show for all your labors?
Your double-wide, with mortgage almost paid -
I can go and get shitfaced with all your neighbors
Whose cars all sit on blocks there in the shade.

My Mama said to always hold my head up, etc.

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