FOR JEFF CALLAWAY by Joel Ausanka Reese


Are you now dreaming away?

escaping from white walls,

white rock holding metal bars

and white cops hold keys.

Are you wandering in fields

with bluebonnets, writing them

sonnets, hoping to find yourself

somewhere else in the morning?

I bet the food reminds you

of High School Crapeteria lunches.

Are you remembering late night

talks we’ve had about the

Outlaw Press? Do you know

how much you’ve given of yourself

to art. to women. to bars?

For feature readings, for friendship,

hoping you can still get a grip

on reality? Do you know how much

you’ve given to me?

When I was too scared

to get up and read in front

of strangers, when I thought

no one would listen to what

I had to say, you took me

under your wing and showed me

how to make my own way

my friend, the one who loved me

right away, the guy who

I so admired for his tenacity

and his way with hot hippie women.

His truth telling and taunting

of the world and its axioms.

Are you wandering away now

silently and unaccountable?

A soft spoken fable,

an old story amongst friends

of that poet we’d all love to see again.

I want to see you again.

I want us to go on Monday

to the Hole In The Wall

for $2 pints

and skirts so tight,

the Protestants want to make them illegal!

I want us to grab some girls and some smoke,

go down to Camel’s Hole and listen

to hippie drum circles til dusk

watch unleashed dogs fuss

about who marked off territory first.

I want us to go to a Mid-Texas poetry festival,

hook up with Thom so he can give us

some new reading material.

I know he writes poems everyday.

I want us to go  to La Tazza Fresca

that week, set the stage ablaze

with poems that make girls knees weak!

And watch them gaze, because its damn sexy

to be a Texas Outlaw Poet.

Well, I’ll keep a place for you

at the Hole In The Wall,

make sure the Lone Star’s on call

and make sure hot bartenders

take us home 🙂

I’ll read an extra poem,

“The Greatest Poems Of All,

Rode Hard And Put Up Wet,”

sadly, that’s as good as it gets

for now, at least.

But, I’m not going anywhere,

this place is my home,

and when you come back,

my door will be open to you.