Image for the poem tough guy blues

tough guy blues

I have said I am made of dreams
technicolor dreams in my black & white perfidia

tough guys don’t cry, not so’s you’d notice.
like Bogart in ‘Casablanca,’ drinking straight
whiskey, remembering Paris. remembering
Ilsa, who walked hard on his heart.
when the song said ‘ a kiss is just a kiss’
I knew that sometimes even poetry lies.

and love?
love carries a dirty reputation
when the fog is closing in along with the Huns
and your woman is on the next flight out
with another man.

on my lonesome highway, I’ve learned there are two
kinds of females, the good & the wicked, angels &
devil-women. an angel will charm a man into falling
in love quick; he’ll give her his heart ‘cause that’s what
it’s made for. but an angel has wings for a purpose, &
when the river of sorrowing gets too deep, she will fly.

(I take long walks in the rain. my eyes get moist.
my cheeks get damp. but tough guys never cry.
so I accuse the rain…)

I’ve spent a fair amount of time with whores; they’ve
talked nice to me, touched me, maybe in that place
where I used to have a heart. & mostly, the sex was good.
but even tough guys know sex don’t replace love.

most nights, I linger on my bar stool, tie loose, fedora tilted
back, considering time as it slips away, & angels long gone.
waiting for the next devil-woman to come along…

Written by JohnFeddeler
All writing remains the property of the author. Don't use it for any purpose without their permission.
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