Forgot what poverty was

Could it be that late in life

There is no money tree

Savings evaporate as hand sanitizer dries

No one to hold

As the world is on the barbecue spit of disease

Not a new moment

Hunger, paying the rent often the

Beginning of a relationship

You made my shirts, cut my hair

Now back in your barber chair

As your fingers find the part in my hair

Warm hands patted my hair

Almost massaging a very old white scalp

Oh, yes the memory of pleasure

Reverberates throughout

Your kind soft hands

Remind me of when we had everything!

Frank X Cameron 4/19/2020


No You’re Not!

Hear tell another birthday has snuck up on you

Don’t know exactly how a birthday sneaks up on one

Only so many days in the year

One would have to be your ‘lottery’ day

Or not

Birthdays, youthful birthdays are candle lighting good

But when there is not enough room for all the candles

Numeric candles are used

As if to reduce the obvious

Getting older

Supposed to act more mature

More accepting of graying years

There is consolation though

Your progenitors

Are probably much older than you

Though how anyone could be older than 50 I don’t know

Happy Birthday Katie my lady!

FXC 4/15/2020


Corn Beef Hash

So many things to do

Even have gone through my bucket list

Numerous times

Not sure that a bucket list can be revised

However it would seem that given enough thinking time

Any concept can be reconfigured

Actually if there is more than one stirring the pot

Even a mutual list will have adjusted priorities

Learning French was one we inherited, on a back burner

Can’t say there was any real drive to learn French

Other than stories from previous generations

Yeah riding on the Rhine stopping to see Paris

Was definitively romantic

Projected plans formulated more than once

Surgeries and whatever delayed the dates

Now it seems as if planning is all we might do

Maybe if we rented a gondola for the Ohio

Oh yeah, wrong country

Reminiscing took us all the way back

To old family meal traditions

Each family to a degree seems like its own history book

My memories were a culinary lust menu

7 children, parents, grandparents

Certainly not going to be enough food to go around the table

It’s where I learned the real meaning of a ‘dinner bell’

Be sitting or be crying

Even today I can see the family menu day by day

Of course Friday was tuna fish casserole

Sunday very possibly could be a pork chop

The rest of the week included in no particular order

Hot dog, sauerkraut and baked potato

Chop suey out of a can with mounds of rice

Liver steak, with lots of gravy and onions

Chicken noodle soup with box of crackers

But really I’m ruining the speciality items

Sunday night without fail was the best

Everyone got a ‘Black cow’, coke poured over vanilla ice cream

So many behaviors would be corrected with a ‘Black cow’

Almost every meal had fruit out of a can, you know the list

Fruit cocktail, peaches, apple sauce,

Very frequently salads, though simple

A few leaves of lettuce, two or three slices of tomatoes

A spoonful of cottage cheese

Deserts were interchangeable

Orange jello, raspberry jello, lime jello

Vanilla pudding, chocolate pudding, butterscotch pudding

Didn’t really matter if there was a preference

There was only one entree per night

But lest I forget, the dinner piece de resistance

‘Corn beef hash’,

Actually I guess I could go on with this culinary history

But what I have documented is that there were scheduled meals

With designated items much anticipated

Might not be French cuisine

But then we didn’t have to leave the house either

FXC 04/07/2020 Copyright

20 in 2020

Needed just a few items

Bananas, oranges, gardening gloves

These days mostly having needed items delivered

But today, late on a Friday,

Slipped my mask on

Headed to ‘Sauls Vegetable Market’

Yes, the name was changed to protect the innocent

Just grabbed a carry basket as I entered

Knew full well the location of bananas and oranges

The gardening gloves required a question

Usually a quick checkout

This time manned

By two perfectly young ladies

Well perfectly and young are redundant

Okay add ladies to the pleasant formula

Exchanged banter about the crazy times

Mentioned how they could now give their examples of having lived through tough times

To which one delightful miss replied

“Yes, when I was twenty in 2020….”

FXC 4/4/2020 Copyright

Not Really Even A Number

Surely a Census Questionaire

Has crossed this desk before

Granted signatures don’t seem to be needed anymore

Especially if ‘Hey Siri or Go Google’

Or some other summing of the dictation gods

Forgot ‘Alexa’ are available

But beyond that 50 million questions

To determine my living status, sexual orientation, age and nationality

That can actually be understood except nationality

That one sticks in the craw

Used to be when they were here the older relatives would lean on their canes

Reminiscing about so and so and where it all started

Best they could remember

But now those older relatives include yours truly

Who remembers stories of the ‘old days’

But wasn’t really there

Home movies sometimes on a grainy screens

Would occasionally illuminate a pastoral scene

Don’t know anymore

If it matters where one came from

As much as it matters

How hard one tried when they got there

FXC 04/03/2020


The Mask

State Fair Winner

American folklore is replete

With examples of those stepping forward in times of trouble

To fill a need or vanquish a foe

Paul Revere, Rosie the Riveter, are just two examples

Many , many more have been in our lives but are no more

For their sacrifice

Their example continues to this day in the efforts of

Volunteer organizations who seek to assist those less fortunate

Today there is a desperate need for masks for the Coronavirus

Did not really understand the seriousness of this lack of equipment

However, maybe not in my back pocket but my always thinking

Seamstress associate, State Fair winner extraordinaire

Made so many dresses, shirts,costumes for family members

A natural conclusion she could be brought on board for masks

So like many stepping forward we have masks, plaid masks

Thank you precious seamstress!

FXC 04/02/2020


You said what?

Sh, sh, to be sure the phrase

‘You said what’ is usually only verbalized just prior to fisticuffs

However it is frequently ready to explode out of one’s lips

After being confronted with the most impossible logic

It could have been reverberating between the ears

As one hears what could be planted in the yard

In a single day let alone during the summer

Not always blessed with the ‘big picture’

It is sometimes difficult to comprehend those

Who have the vision and a sidekick to embellish it

Cost, time, labor, muscle soreness seem to not to be part of the equation

Nonetheless for those who like to utter the phrase,

‘You said what’ have learned all too well

The other party knows quite well what they said

FXC 4/2/2020