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(11June 1940 / Binghamton, New York)

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Smile Will Ya

Smile will ya, they tell me, but they do not comprehend
That humor is not lost to me, it's simply on the mend
Life got in the way and I don't laugh as I once did
Perhaps They don't see or understand the things I've hid

There never was a time when laughter came easily to me
But that was long ago, before I found my beloved sea
Where I could watch the sunrise as it transends horizons there
In fondness, recollecting all those memories…I cared

However I am mindful that I smile even less than before
And I am taking steps to find my humor and restore
Expressions of delight that hide behind these fortress walls
Sequestered, how am I to walk, or run before I crawl?

Perhaps my laughter is hidden, for this is just a way
Of seeking out the child in me who never got out to play
I'm searching through the annals of my bewildered, fouled up, mind
In hot pursuit of this, my search, I've yet to uncover, even find…

But I am drawing nearer to that, it is my journeys end
And all I ask is patience while I sit here and pretend
Maybe, I'll even invent one new word you'll never find
In any dictionary, of any kind, for the humor is in my mind…

Consider this, my darlings, both kind and oh so vile
Perhaps it's my awareness that it's you who doesn't smile
So what you see, reflects upon your instabilities
Maybe you're the one to knock, for smiles you do not see…

And while I'm on this subject, bear in mind these words I write
Are from the heart of this poet, who has often lost this fight
This time there is no light reading in my world of poetry
It bears the weight and burden of our failed society

This poet bears a cross you cannot carry, or wish to find
And so my humor's hidden in the recesses of my mind
Perhaps it is YOUR task to seek, discover, then in a while
Realize you're the one whose lacking the ability to smile!

James Casey 2003

Submitted: Thursday, August 16, 2012
Edited: Friday, August 17, 2012


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Poet's Notes about The Poem

Wrote this as I was ending my time at The Pol Company after 37 years in the business. Just a note to our employees who knew nothing of my before I met them life

Comments about this poem (A Tree of Ashes by James Casey )

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  • Smoky Hoss (8/25/2012 6:17:00 PM)

    There's alot of power in this one; makes me think I need to try to understand others far more than I do, be more compassionate. Thanks James.

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