by Jeffrey Murrell


He stood on a stage of finely lacquered
Wood strips, holding his guitar, sipping warm beer
From a heavy mug, between laughter.

The stage was set up back in the rear
Of the warm, cozy little people-den
Filled with hard-working folks so dear.

Honest and simple, they didn't follow trends;
They came to relax and enjoy good times.
He'd give them a show at the day's end.

He set out stuffed animals in a line
On the stage, before his feet, perhaps
To be unique or, perhaps as a sign.

He strummed off-the-cuff rhymes to start the act
And recited careless, funny proverbs,
Giggling in poor taste like a pompous ass.

Then they grew tired and started to stir;
Yes, even they, so well tempered, grew bored.
So he started a song which no one'd heard.

It was one of his best--dear to his heart.
But the people left (an ungrateful hoard!).
They wrecked his soul--he couldn't even start!