My good friend David J. Bauman has been a poet for longer than I know. I had the privilege of working with him at the Priestley-Forsyth Memorial Library in Northumberland, PA for about a year before he took a position at the Plains Township Library. Seems I met David at the right time in my career (life?). He taught me a great deal about poetry and coached me in establishing and maintaining this blog of mine.

I’ve been writing poems since I was a teenager. Many of them never saw daylight. They remained closed up in old journals, existing but unrealized. Forgotten. (Several never even made the journey out of my imagination, down the pen and unto paper.) Meeting David, however, quickened something in me. Words and phrases that had suffered sequestration due to lack of rectitude somehow found a rebirth. I began to believe that my words had meaningfulness.

But this post is not about me. Rather, it is about showcasing a poem David wrote which has found a well-deserved home in Contemporary American Voices, a journal of poetry. June 1, 2014. I know you’ll enjoy it.


While I was waiting
for the bus, Miss Shaffer said
“Get off the gate!
It’s not for swinging.”

But I knew better.

Another, on the playground—
I don’t recall her name,
But she yanked
me by the arm, right off

the swing set, and screamed,
“Don’t call me ‘old Lady!’”
I was only trying to yodel
(Yodaladie, yodaladie…).

And one time I wasn’t doing anything,
so I was sent to the principal’s office.
That was when days were for doing
nothing when you could.

When swings were for singing
anything that came to mind.
Fences were just in the way
and every kid knew the truth;

gates do that for a reason,
and it goes against nature
not to swing them.

2 Replies to “Swing”

  1. Wow, Steve. Thank you for the kind honor, not just of sharing one of my poems, but the immeasurable compliment that I might have had some small influence in your rediscovering yourself as a poet. What an honor. Thank you, my friend! For whatever peripheral role I played, I am grateful. So glad you are writing!
    (And now that I cleaned my reader feed out a little, I’m getting notifications again! :-D)


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