I hope old Schooner’s all right.
He looked a little cranky last time.
He knew something was coming down the pike.
Birds know. They have a crystal ball.
They foresee earthquakes, tsunamis.
He must have foreseen the sale of the pub
& the old drive-thru that housed his Taj Mahal
Of a cage where he held court rasping, See Ya!
To customers who had stopped to chat.
I hope he’s okay where he is.
Each Friday at the pub I raise my glass
To Old Schooner.
Here’s to you! I say. Stay cocky, dude.
I was reading a poem by Weldon Kees —
Does anyone read Weldon Kees nowadays? —
About Boris, ‘the fatalist parrot’ who fell off
I thought of old Schooner in his cage in the
Drive thru bottle shop at Magnums at McLaren Vale.
At least he had some life in him unlike Boris
Who ‘watched the traffic flow, unheeding’.
You’d say ‘hello’ to Schooner. He wouldn’t say anything
But once you got your purchase and went to go,
He’d say ‘See Ya’ real chipper like. You’d wave back
And give him the thumbs up and if he could Schooner
Would reciprocate. He had a fan when it was hot and
A lamp for when it was cold and a little mirror to see
what a handsome chap he was. He looked well fed.
At least he didn’t pace up and down like a lion in a cage.
Whenever I have a glass now at Magnums I raise it
To old Schooner.