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Notes penned in haste on the occasion of a birthday

A man who would call himself a poet ought to be able to wax eloquent on his birthday...or at the very least fly off on some colorful tangent or rant laced with...fierce invective...righteous umbrage at the state of the nation and the leadership class...none too thrilled about the followership class either...perhaps if fortunate hit on a glimmer of insight or a soupçon of wisdom before adjourning to the reading room with a crime novel and a Ninkasi Dawn of the Red IPA...with apologies to T-Bone: The six-pack of Bud Lite Lime left outside my door Saturday has been duly stored in the wine closet where it is being held in abeyance as backup for the twelve-pack left outside the door at last year's birthday. I think of this as my earthquake-preparedness kit.

T-Bone enjoins me to take on the political nervous breakdown our nation is having, a topic that calls for a Mark Twain or Nietzsche. Already lesser talents are spilling oceans of ink on the subject. Well, maybe not oceans, but sizable puddles, at any rate.... While it is tempting to speak in these terms, the phenomenon is nothing new, not even with the rise of that scoundrel Trump. The country has always been somewhat wacky, not always lovably so, left of normal, out where the buses don't run. The founders were descendants of debt scofflaws, petty criminals, religious fanatics, and malcontents of dubious shades and persuasions. More than a few owned slaves. These guys, and it goes without saying all were male, may have been the cream of their crop, but the crop that spawned delivered, shall we say, a mixed bag of seed.

Yes, my tongue is somewhat in cheek as I pen this. I may pursue the line further and with more gravity in days ahead. For the nonce, I thank my friends whose expression of wishes for a happy birthday means more to me than I can express. I wish good fortune to you all.

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