Wednesday, October 2, 2013

A September Verse 2013

Existentialism Revisited

I never believed in the wisdom of living for today
because today always seems as much an illusion
as yesterday and tomorrow
Unless what they really meant was to live without self-consciousness
which only Zen monks and Zorbas
and Grandmothers do

My Grandmother was like that:
never needing to reflect on her purpose in life
or whether life had any meaning
the question itself just non-sense
like Red Skelton on the black and white
in her sparse living room

Her later years not so much golden
as coal black and bleak with loneliness
the only purpose left her
was lighting candles in front of the Virgin on Sundays
and frying chicken wings for Frankie
whenever he stopped in to say by his presence that he hadn’t forgotten

She was content to fry chicken then on the spur of the moment
and before you knew it she’d be shoving a plate in front of you
saying, “Mangia, mangia”
and feeding you stories along with Italian bread and cold eggplant
and instant coffee
stories about the meaning of her life

I’m not sure that chicken wings are the meaning of life
no matter how crispy and juicy and salty
and I’m equally uncertain about lighting candles
in front of stone cold Virgins
who would likely think it silly even if they
could really answer our prayers

Now, at sixty-five, I find fault with gardens
and pick off vegetables like I want to be done with it
and I curse libraries because they have too many books
and I get angry at beaches if the wind is too windy or the sun is not sunny
and I pick off friends and acquaintances and strangers alike
who disappoint or annoy me with their tedium

and I close more doors now than I open

(c) 2013 Frank DeFrancesco


  1. Well, whether you meant to or not, you've opened a door for me with your writing. And today, you opened the door even wider. Hope that makes some difference.

    (As if I never do the exact same things you've listed...)

  2. Thanks, Mitch, nice to know you are stopping by. I always enjoy your Spanish adventures. My best to you and San Geraldo.

  3. Whoa Frank, I am impressed. What a great poem on so many levels. This could be/should be published somewhere. Excellent!

    Also -

    As a native Southerner, I can testify that fried chicken is indeed very near to the meaning of life.

    Food is Love.

    God is Love.

    God is Food.

    Think about it.

  4. Thanks Russ,
    But my fried chicken is no where as good as Grandma's - she was a Southerner too - from southern Italy!

  5. Hey, we Southerners know what's good!



Related Posts with Thumbnails