Open Your Eyes

 Open your eyes, wipe the night away.
Open your eyes. It is morning,
the eastern sky awash with the sun and its many colors of light.
Slowly the world arises to do its daily dance.
The lonely and the loved gather themselves up for the new day.
Some waltz easily through the early hours;
for some, it is a difficult march
to be walked only after several cups of coffee.
Early runners dash onto city streets
where they run their morning runs.
Their sneakers pound a steady beat.
From the houses, from the homes that the runners pass,
breakfast aromas seep out to them,
voices rise and fall in a chorus of conversations.
“Up and at ‘em,” they chant,
some with a slight tone of the resignation that is Monday,
many accompanied by the sound of running water
as they shower, they shave, they brush their teeth and comb their hair.
In a suburban backyard,
butterflies flitter from roses to wisteria to crape myrtle.
A squirrel scampers from tree to ground and goes foraging for breakfast.
Two robins touch down on the birdbath, scoop the water into their beaks and drink.
Blue jays chatter while the bluebirds come singing,
their best songs sung for they who give an ear.
With its air cooling the skin, a breeze
eases through the oak, the mimosa, the loquat tree,
all standing near the tall metal fence at the property’s edge.
Leaves rustle. Wind chimes tinkle. Occasionally a dog barks.
A clarinet and piano jazz duet drifts in from two neighbors away.
Three cats appear at the kitchen door, a gray, a tabby, a black-and-white
meowing, scratching the wood, hungry from a night of out-and-about.
The door opens. The cats rush inside,
each heading for a bowl of Purina,
each chomping the dry brown pebbles of chow.
The black-and-white looks up. His big round eyes whisper,
“The day is such a joy, such a wonder,
if you open your eyes. Just open your eyes.
See and taste this day. Chew it well
and let its season pass in God’s good time. Soon
the butterflies will be gone.”

Aw Shucks

Went to a party,
My baby and me.
Half the night later
We left with a plea

Of “Aw shucks.
My baby’s got the hiccups.”

Took my car into
Mr. Fix-em-up.
“Is it bad?” I asked.
“She’s just a pup.”

His retort: “Aw shucks.
Your baby’s got the hiccups.”

My dog got sick.
I wasn’t sure why.
Rushed her to the vet.
He looked me in the eye

and said, “Aw shucks.
This baby’s got the hiccups.”

Bought myself a house.
It was big and green.
Soon there was a leak.
It was unforeseen.

Just another “Aw shucks.
My baby’s got the hiccups.”

My boss called me in
And he let me know
Things were going bad
And I had to go.

He said, “Aw shucks.
The company’s got the hiccups.”

At the Pearly Gates
I stood in line.
Was no place for me.
Just a maybe next time.

‘Cause “Aw shucks.
Heaven’s got the hiccups.