“I Don’t Know Much About Women”

Cover of "A Good Woman"
Cover of A Good Woman

Off to the west the sky roiled as lightning flashed,

I thought, “Looks like we’ve got a storm heading our way,”

I’d been out here on the range for weeks,

This job was over and I was ready to collect my pay,


Lonesome Jim, I don’t understand women,”

I was down in a ravine but I heard the young man yell,

“They’re complicated and ask way too much,

What they want is confusing as hell,”


“Son, there are several things you’ll have to learn,”

Now I’m just a foreman and I don’t know much,

Especially when it comes to knowing women,

But I gave him some ideas, about pleasing them and such,


“First, Bill, you need to understand how you think,

Once you have a handle on that, you’re on your way,”

By then Bill had ridden up and looked me in the eye,

“Are you saying that women think different than a guy?”


The expression on his face said all I needed to know,

Bill believed men and women always thought the same,

“Son, men can only focus on one thing at a time,

He loses track of the world and even forgets his name,


But a woman is ready to do many tasks at a time,

While she builds family ties she’s a planner and a baker,

She’s got a lot more strengths than he does,

She’s a caregiver while he’s a taker,”


Bill was disturbed by this, perhaps a trifle mad,

“Are you saying that women are better than men?

Whose side are you on?” he snarled derisively,

I knew right then I had entered a tiger’s den,


“Tell me, Bill, what makes you want to cry?

You hide your feelings because you’re a guy,

But women could explain forever and a day,

How feelings are important and a thousand reasons why,”


She’ll take you through the day and every mood swing,

You’ll want your ideas organized and each idea filed in place,

She’ll want to share her day and tell you everything,

You’ll want the bottom line, and you’ll cut through the chase,


If you listen to her she’ll believe she’s loved,

And always look straight into her eyes,

If you look away like you’re talking to a man,

She’ll interpret what you say as lies,”


“Lonesome Jim, if you’re so smart to give me advice,

How come you’re always out here, alone on the range?”

He thought he had me cornered because I hesitated a bit,

I said, “I think your question is valid, and not at all strange,


When I was your age I acted like a fool,

I thought love was a feeling I could turn off and on,

I never understood that love should be active,

I was miserable until one day it dawned,


Life was not meant to always be understood,

I should have learned that as a boy,

I realized I didn’t need to understand a woman,

So I relaxed and began to enjoy,


A woman might be complex but she’s good as gold,

If you don’t try to control her or live in a cave,

Remember to love her forever, to have and to hold,

She should not be your boss and she’s not your slave,”


Bill was quiet for a moment as he took this all in,

He could tell by my face there had been hurt and pain,

Quietly he asked, “Did she die or did she leave you?”

But my answer was smothered by the onrushing rain,


Bill left that job for another one in town,

And I’m still working on the ranch, come what may,

I hope Bill found a good woman to love,

And I’ll save my philosophizing for another day,


I shouldn’t have been shooting my big mouth off,

And making myself to be wise and grand,

How could I give answers about women to Bill,

When it’s clear there are things I still don’t understand.



Marching Orders

English: Garhwal Rifles Parade in New Delhi, India
Image via Wikipedia

When the sap is running in the maple trees,

And the snow still lingers on the hill,

Remember when young soldiers marched,

And went through their numerous drills,


Proudly they would stand in silent rows,

With precision they’d show their skills,

Ready to display how they could march,

Ready to count their kills,


It was about this time in early morn,

When I saw them coming over the rise,

They were proudly marching, marching,

But not ready for our big surprise,


Behind trees our soldiers were concealed,

Rifles primed and ready to fire,

And the soldiers kept marching, marching,

Their situation was extremely dire,


Behind cover our cannon waited,

Ready to rip and kill and shred,

To stop the soldiers from marching, marching,

What thoughts ran through our heads,


Why aren’t they home safe and warm,

Where rifles don’t hide behind trees,

Instead they’re marching, marching, marching,

Trying to ignore warnings in every breeze,


We held our fire until we saw them clear,

Then our shots the silence shattered,

But they kept marching, marching, marching,

As if the formation was all that mattered,


The cannon roared and shook the earth,

Our rifles fired from the trees,

Until the soldiers quit marching, marching,

But they struggled back up to their knees,


The cannon and rifles took their toll,

Bayonets took care of the rest,

No soldiers were marching, marching,

No longer were they the best,


I walked among the fallen foe,

And saw someone’s husband, son, or friend,

Who will never go marching, marching,

He’ll never go marching again,


They’ll never go marching home tonight,

With a parade to show they’re best,

Family and kin will march around graves,

Where they’ve been laid to rest.



“Not Quite Housebroke!”

Whole green beans in a carton.
Image via Wikipedia

I went to visit my country friends,

It’d been a while, you see,

They’d told me to drop on in,

They sure was glad to see me,


They hugged me several times,

Before anyone there spoke,

“Don’t mind our dog under the porch,

He ain’t quite housebroke,”


Conversation flowed easily,

And time flew by,

I thought it was about time,

To say my goodbyes,


“Why don’t you join us for supper?

Cornbread and beans and blackberry pie,

Poke Salad and green beans,

A little moonshine for you and I,”


Adult conversation they were hoping for,

They’d been so nice I couldn’t say no,

So I said I’d dine with them,

Then I’d have to go,


Little Bobbie threw food,

Finally my friend spoke,

“We’re learning him right,

He’s just not housebroke,”


After a few swigs of moonshine,

Our laughter grew loud,

The stories that were told,

Would’ve entertained any crowd,


I helped clean the kitchen,

The two little ones went off to bed,

They were still too young to stay awake,

They needed lots of rest instead,


My friends got to arguing,

And then she finally spoke,

“You’d best get out of here now,

Before something gets broke,”



Relationships are fragile and need time to grow,

Words have to be tender before they’re spoke,

Because anger can explode quickly,

If both are not housebroke.



She’s the World to Me

English: Heart Planet Earth
Image via Wikipedia

My world is beautiful and wonderful,

I want to caress her fragile skin,

She’s my world on many levels,

I want to feel her heat within,

The atmosphere is her glory,

As it drapes around her crown,

Her cheeks blush with excitement,

As I love her up and down,

I can’t live without her,

She’s more than I’ll ever need,

She’s always there to greet me,

And there I’ll plant my seed,

When I see her glory around me,

I burst with manly pride,

She’ll be protected always by my love,

Which I’ll keep for her inside.

My Smiles Within

all smiles
Image via Wikipedia

Sometimes my face hides my smiles within,

As I remember moments and special friends,

They’re all I have to keep me warm,

But they’re enough when memories swarm,

“See that puppy!” I shrieked out loud,

You would have thought I’d draw a crowd,

“Wow!” when excited at my first kiss,

Her eyes were closed in momentary bliss,

Each child born always brought a grin,

How could I hold back the happiness within?

Even at funerals I couldn’t suppress a smile,

As friends passed on, “I’ll see you in awhile,”

So now my thoughts are full of smiles,

I can stretch them out for miles and miles,

Weathered, worn, my face appears grim,

But hidden beneath this tired old skin,

Are hopes and dreams of things I sought,

And wrapped around them are smiling thoughts.

What Help Can I Give?

Retouch (Photo credit: Rachel Ford James)

 Where was I when you needed a hand?

How did I miss your plea, did I not understand?

You were there all along, living in your car,

Your home happened to be wherever you are,

You shared your life’s problems and let me in,

Your world was in chaos, I didn’t know where to begin,

But slowly and surely my understanding grew,

I learned a lot about me while I learned about you,

I won’t plead ignorance, I just didn’t see,

My focus was on myself, I was concerned about me,

You’re searching for ways to get up from the ground,

If I give you a hand up, a job might be found,

I’ll look through new eyes and change my view,

The world is hurting, I can feel it too,

I’ve got to reach out to the world I see,

For each person there is a lot like me,

A man walks along with pain on his face,

He has nowhere to go, he lives no place,

Or the orphan child who goes hungry at night,

What can I do to ease her plight?

What help can I give to help you along,

What can I do to help you grow strong?

This life is tough, I hope you understand,

For when you recover, give someone a hand,

Each of us is weak but together we’re strong,

We’ll face the world bravely and help each other along.



My Love Will Always Be Around

My lonely heart told me love had gone,

I heard that via word of mouth,

Yet my heart refused to be alone,

It sent misery on a road heading south,


I waited until my head was clear,

Looking for a beautiful view,

My heart was behind walls and out of touch,

Until finally I saw you,


Even when day gave way to night,

I refused to give up and just hung around,

I wanted to remain tender and do things right,

I dug in and refused to give ground,


My love grows stronger day by day,

I want you to be my very best friend,

I want you around whether work or play,

And by my side until time does end,


My love is constant and cannot be driven away,

It is as persistent as a love sick hound,

Open your heart and let my love stay,

Our hearts will forever be bound.





Today Is a New Day

Too often I cry, “What can you do for me today?”

But what I want to say,

“What can I do for you today?”

Can I wash your feet, visit you in jail,

Make you a pie with a heavenly smell?

I don’t want this to be a reciprocal thing,

I don’t want you to owe me anything,

Since life races along at breakneck speed,

I’d like to do something, at least one good deed,

I’ll give you a smile, start a new trend,

Share my life, become a true friend,

I want each day to be more about you,

So tell me, “What do you want me to do?”

I want my children to imitate what they see,

I guess that’s when life can be about me,

I’ll honor my parents though it may seem odd,

I’ll do unto others and I’ll worship God,

If I am generous in all that I do,

Then I might influence one, or maybe a few,

Helping others won’t be just an act,

And it won’t be because I simply react,

I want to share my heart in all that I do,

Today is a new day, what can I do for you?



Devil or Angel?

Devil by m a t h e s
Image via Wikipedia

From her window she watched,

As he strolled by each day,

Until he was completely out of sight,

Before she would lie down and pray,


“Oh, dear Lord,” she would say,

“He got to me again today,

If I don’t change how I think,

I won’t be going heaven’s way,”


The warmth that radiated inside,

As she studied his manly chest,

That warmth became a raging fire,

As she thought about all the rest,


Her dreams in the dark were of him,

She could feel his arms locked tight,

She had no doubts, she was totally sure,

She would share her bed one night,


As she stared from her window,

One day he glanced back and saw,

Her gaze raking over him wild and free,

Her thoughts beyond the law,


Her intense longing was clear to see,

What could he do but turn around,

She opened her door and greeted him,

They embraced without one sound,


Clothing could not keep them apart,

Soon it was skin against skin,

And all the passion stored away,

Exploded and was released within,


They spent that day in passion’s throes,

Navigators with much to explore,

No matter which direction either went,

Their bodies begged for more,


Happy, content, and physically spent,

He left her without a goodbye,

He walked bravely into a cold world,

Where men are not supposed to cry,


For she had stirred the flames,

Of a heart long grown cold,

And bought it to life again,

For his heart needed someone to hold,


She watched him walk away,

Every step showed confidence and spring,

As he approached, men and women stepped aside,

For he had the confidence of a king,


Devil or angel, she had forgotten her role,

She had so much love to give away,

If she passed someone needy on the street,

There surely would be hell to pay,


But for one day love reigned supreme,

And a man lost his worries and cares,

If she found him with his guard down,

And caught him unaware.


“Show Me the Shoes!”

Anthropomorphic Valentine, circa 1950–1960
Image via Wikipedia

She curled up next to me,

All soft and deliciously warm,

That was different than usual,

And set off my alarms,


She said, “I’ll make myself comfortable,

I need to unwind,”

I eyed her suspiciously,

Had she lost her mind?


“Would you like a back rub,

Or a nice tall drink?”

“What kind of trouble am I in?”

I started to think,


Everything was too perfect,

With Valentine’s Day approaching soon,

My thoughts should have been about love,

Flowers, violins, and a romantic moon,


“Your gown looks mighty thin,

I don’t want you to catch a cold,”

Was I forgetting something?

I was trying to be good as gold,


“Oh, oh,” I thought, “I did it this time,”

When her eyes filled up with tears,

She must know I spent time with the boys,

And we drank too many beers,


“Dear, I’m sorry,” I started to say,

But she confessed before I did,

I listened once without interrupting,

To the secret that she hid,


“Yesterday I went shopping,

And bought the most beautiful shoes,

I thought you might get mad at me,

“You know, blow a fuse,”


But if you were already angry,

I’d buy some brand new clothes,

I told my friends that you did,

I said these were the ones you chose,


My girlfriends celebrated with me,

About what a generous man you are,

Things got a little crazy,

That’s when I wrecked the car,


I looked at her with my silly grin,

And said, “What’s this world coming to?

Yesterday was one of those days,

When one of those cold winds blew,”


When I reached over and turned out the light,

She said quietly, “Aren’t you going to say anything?”

I said, “Look in the cabinet for your Valentine’s card,

And also you’ll find a special ring,”


“I know it’s early to celebrate Valentine’s Day,

It’s not the car, but you I choose,

So put on some clothes,

And show me the shoes!”


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