Frank’s Green Leather Jacket
When I was seventeen in the early nineties,
I inherited something from my dad, his green leather jacket,
It was straight out of ’79, retro cool and bad like a motherf…
I’m talking about like Shaft cool about to break up a racket.
It gave me the nostalgia of a different time, another era,
Not so much of disco but those of my parent’s early years,
The places they had been, the people they had met,
The stories it could tell if I pressed it against my ears.
Dad had been a semi pro early in his youth,
So he retained that bit of, I could’ve been, swagger,
A loud talker, a hard worker, a photographer some days,
Even though that lifestyle didn’t have as much glamour.
But I remember him wearing it on those days,
The smell of leather and the sound it made as he hugged me,
So when he outgrew it (sideways), I got his old jacket,
A time forgotten by many but then something else bugged me.
Some kids at school may have been a little cruel,
It wasn’t yet cool (or fresh) to be retro in those days,
At least some thought it was straight out of a thrift shop,
I wasn’t hip hop or rock, I was going through a phase.
But I kept it for maybe a couple of years, I don’t recall,
I just remember getting compliments from older folks,
I thought (again I was young), it wasn’t meant for me,
So I gave it away to Goodwill without any coax.
Then I learned about the cycles in fashion,
How everything comes back in style some years later,
And though I sometimes I wish I could find it,
It would feel like the swag of a trendsetting innovator.
So whoever picked up that old leather green jacket,
With that little bit of white paint streak on the right sleeve,
I hope you wore it well with style even though it was old,
And a little of Frank’s soul you would’ve received.