Tuesday, July 24, 2012

That June

We agreed that Michael Stipe
couldn't sing, but he could write.
And, hip hop was a fungus
that would kill acoustic soon.
Playing Thursday gigs for Pearls,
resolutely amateur -
the nights so humid
the guitars went out of tune

that June.
That June.

Monday mornings we'd ditch German Lit and Culture
to go smoke fairy rings behind the Student U.
We'd settle back against the dying tree roots.
Three summer credits; we couldn't graduate too soon

that June.
That June.

Now Monday mornings, I'm drinking coffee through a straw.
Got student loans to pay; I gotta suck up to my boss.
Monday mornings - migraines and anxiety.
Monday mornings ain't like they used to be

that June.
That June.

Some of Shawna's words for Open Link Night at dVerse


50 comments:

awakenedwords said...

oh so good, Monday's are a bitch aren't they? Mine have gotten so bad I start dreading them Sunday noon. Trying to find that rabbit hole....

poemblaze said...

Great poem. I still like Stipe's voice despite its rough edges.

Susan Daniels said...

I love Michael Stipe too, but this poem still smolders. Well done.

Louise said...

Ah, life is never as we imagine as teenagers, is it? Cool poem.. :)

mrs mediocrity said...

This is a wonderful look back at the idealism of youth...
great use of rhyme to bring it all home.

That June, and all the June's hereafter...

Timoteo said...

"We couldn't graduate too soon..."

Insightful take on our incessant drive to be somewhere in the future instead of the present...and what does the future comprise? Sucking coffee through a straw and bitching about Mondays!

Another fine effort, Mama!

Helen said...

Blasphemy! Michael Stipe CAN sing! Really enjoyed this ........

ayala said...

Great...we were in a hurry to grow up..not knowing how much we would miss those days.. :)

Beachanny said...

You paint the picture well of moving on and taking on responsibilities. And then it never ends...sad to say.
Loved the poem, the repetition of June haunted like echoes down the years.

Beachanny said...

You paint the picture well of moving on and taking on responsibilities. And then it never ends...sad to say.
Loved the poem, the repetition of June haunted like echoes down the years.

Daydreamertoo said...

I tell my teen this all the time. Don't be in such a rush to grow up. Once you reach the reality of life in a real job, it's not so rosy, unless it's a job you love to do.
Nice write MZ

Brian Miller said...

nice...lyrical...and once school is out everything changes for sure...man wish the rewind button worked...

Bodhirose said...

Makes me long for simpler times. Maybe Michael Stipes wasn't the best singer but I sure loved REM's music...

Sioux said...

You've clearly kicked a hornet's nest...

Michael Stipe CAN sing, just as he can write like a madman.

In spite of that horrendously incorrect claim ;) the poem is wicked good.

SaraV said...

Like an old forgotten song, strumming those memory chords--beautifully penned!

jane hewey said...

this is one of those incredible, lyrical poems that reads like a song to me. love it.

jane hewey said...

this is one of those incredible, lyrical poems that reads like a song to me. love it.

chromapoesy.com said...

I love how you bring me into a state of saying 'yeah' though this is so far from my experience of youth. Your poetry immerses me in another world so thoroughly I feel I've lived it.

Susan said...

Great music for this poem! Can hardly believe "that June" is over--mine was years before yours, but the idea is the same--cutting classes and discussing the political/literary vanguard in "our" music--leaning forward, leaning into each other and the future--first ending the war in Vietnam. Mornings! Maybe "That June" is a worm whose job is to prompt us to recheck our options and choices?

rumoursofrhyme said...

Ah, the desperation of youth to reach the future juxtaposed with the rose-tinted spectacles of greater maturity - you've captured it all so well: our hopes, our dream that our reality will somehow be different and better, and the disappointment when we discover that it almost never is.

Claudia said...

very cool..german lit..eh...? smiles

kaykuala said...

A nostalgic playback of what it had been. Monday dreads, sheesh! Nicely crafted MZ!

Hank

emmett wheatfall said...

Oh so lyrical Mama Zen. Your poem is musical in my ear. Powerful...

Fireblossom said...

I like the repeated refrain with one cap.

You done good with that list, chica.

Sylvia K said...

Ah, you did stir up a ton of memories even in my ancient mind! Terrific poem, MZ, and you are good!

Hannah said...

Love that second stanza...those were the days...your repeating refrain works well for this...Great flipside poem Mama Zen!

Myrna R. said...

Oh, to be young again, like we were that June.

Loved reading this.

Buddah Moskowitz said...

Loved every bit of this, especially the first verse:

And, hip hop was a fungus
that would kill acoustic soon.

Hip hop didn't kill acoustic, just pulled the plug on it.

As much as I don't like REM, is how much I like you, and you *know* how much I like you. :)

Thanks
Mosk

henry clemmons said...

I do so know the feeling of this tune. There are many days I could visit me some June. Very nice write. I enjoyed it all.

Day Dreamer said...

Sounds like an amazing memory! Love the fairy rings :)

manicddaily said...

Ha! Wonderful refrain. k.

Ginny Brannan said...

Sadly, we grow older, life goes on. Ahh, but we keep all those great memories! The repetition of "that June" works really well to punctuate the point. Wonderful piece.

Steve King said...

MZ,

You could make a blues out of this so easily---great rhythm and voice in it. And it has that tough nostalgia. Nice job.

(No need to visit back. No post for me tonight)

zongrik said...

this is a great, true and amazing line: And, hip hop was a fungus
that would kill acoustic soon.

jen revved said...

So glad you're bringing 'em in in droves now-- fine, fine work as ever...evocative, just the right touch of nostalgia. Don't know if you saw my "Dos Amantes" poem on my blog, but you might like it. xxxj

She Writes Here Now said...

Don't I know it. June's come and go, but there are those like no other will ever be.

Mary said...

Amazing how perspectives change, isn't't it? Nicely penned.

RD said...

absolutely dig the end rhymes to the "chorus"...the link back to "then"...feels like bittersweet, yet accepting at one

I'm a high drop school out !



if you care to:

consumption

lucychili said...

a journey with more June to come =)

K McGee said...

I know a lot of people say that wouldn't go back if they could - I'm NOT one of those people! Well done.

happygirl said...

Now you're making me miss college, and I typically don't think about college since I work at a college and see all these bratty kids. I hate mondays too.

Sherry Blue Sky said...

This is such a great poem to read.....and remember that line of demarcation between our lives of dreams and our reality....Great writing, kiddo!

flipside records said...

I love your repeated lines, particularly the emphasis you give the second by capitalizing and letting it stand on its own. As if something very significant happened That June, but you are not mentioning it. But any time you think of that summer, there's a particular memory that jumps out---one that perhaps changed your life. I'm guessing this other person played a significant role ... a romantic relationship, a best friend, someone who impacted you deeply.

I love acoustic. And these lines:

"the nights so humid
the guitars went out of tune"

That is seriously sweaty-hot.

This is hilarious: "drinking coffee through a straw" It's my lifeline too. And it does get hit harder through a straw. ;)

Life does change dramatically over the decades. So glad you came to write for me.

Stephanie McManus said...

Has a great cadence...a sort of blues beat. Love it.

Archna Sharma said...

I love this lucid memory, especially the 'fungus' and the 'fairy rings'. And true, it all changes after graduation. I hope you're able to steal some of those moments, though.

Charles Elliott/Beautyseer said...

At first I thought this was about summer love. Had to smile when it turned out to be a lament for lost studenthood! A teacher of mine told me for 30 years that I should go for my Ph.D. Might not be too late for YOU! ( ;0= }

chazinator said...

I love this, bringing into clarity what was and what is. That juxtaposition opens up the possibility of what can be, though one might think from your poem that it is what it is. Your poetry itself tells us that the possible is real.

myheartslovesongs said...

put me in mind of The Mamas and Papas "Monday Monday"...

"that June.
That June."

the repetition really accentuated the feeling of nostalgia for me. love this, MZ!

Yousei Hime said...

Ah...it's been so long, and every time I read I wonder why I didn't come by sooner. You always take the words to unexpected meanings and unconventional corners. Love it. I adore seeing how differently everyone used the list.

darkangelwrites said...

If I could go back and tell myself that was the sweet life, but I only wanted to be "all grown up". Great capture of a universal and personal thread.