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Photo by Bob Gentry 2001 Stanyan Entertainment

A Thought for Today

Some of us are working lifetimes to erase a work set down in haste that should have never seen the page.


The stone cries out. A whisper first, a moan and then a muffled shout. Nobody listens. Why bother with the stone, the single singing rock, the lone man dealing out the cards upon the table in the game of solitaire?

The soloist, whether up above the orchestra, on the outside of the woods beyond the meatrack or in the farthest elbow of a crowded room, is asking to be left alone or crying out for company. No matter. Very rarely does the solo player engage in double solitaire. The reason is a simple one - always there's a chance of winning.

                                             - from "Alone", 1975

Details of Rod's upcoming concerts and appearances can be obtained via the link below:

Rod McKuen Concerts & Appearances

notable birthdays


Drew Barrymore o Nacio Herb Brown o Luis Bunuel o Michael Chang o Frederic Chopin o Jenny Cryws-Williams o W.E.B. DuBois o Sean O. Faolain o Ellen Green o Julius (Dr. J) Irving o Edward (Ted) Kennedy o Sheldon Leonard o James Russell Lowell o Dorothy McGuire o Ellen McLachlan o Edna St. Vincent Millay o Dan Millman o John Mills o Guy Mitchell o Oliver (William Oliver Swofford) o Lee Salonga o Melissa Sarkis o Arthur Schopenhauer o Robert Wadlow o George Washington o Robert Weede o Kenneth Williams o Bud Yorkin o Robert Young o George Zukerman

Rod's random thoughts If you've a special talent, let it be the gift of priorities that benefit the many.

The best gift we've been given is understanding. Alas we do not use it often enough.

We will always owe each other better things than food and fuel.


It's only the rope
finally uncoiling,
the glacier melting at last.
It's only the wind
licking its fingers.
The bird in silent prayer.
The mudlark down
by the rivers edge
helping to build the farm.

Only the boatman
crossing the river,
passengers arriving
at The Isle of the Dead.
The derelict hanging out
at the station
thinking God lives
in package stores,
grocery shops.

It's only the boy
who promised forever
losing you in his
soft blue eyes.
Only the dustman
emptying cans.
A little band
at the corner playing
beautiful, difficult lullabies.

Only the miracle
you always prayed for
but certainly didn't expect.
It's only the lovers
down in the park
giving their summer performance.
Only the girl
with blood stained eyes
saying the song is over.

It's only the roadway
still unpaved
with holes the size
of empty pockets.
Only the locket
you lost or pawned
with nobody's picture
still inside of it
struggling to get free.
Only the spout
of the teakettle whistling,
holding the cup
and saucer hostage.
It's only the cats eye
fixed on a hen
with spangled plumage,
a red hat on
and no party to attend.

It's only the artichoke
pealed by experts
dropped in the gutter
and sailing beyond
the neighborhood corner,
the edge of the world.
It's only the sound
of the head exploding.

It's only erosion
having its way,
invisible algae eating the sea,
having The State
for bed and breakfast.
Only the melon
being recalled
back to Detroit for repairs.
Nothing but Armageddon.

It's only the shadows
turning to substance
as darkness shudders
and closes its hand.
The eye of the hurricane blackened.
Only the beast
you keep in the basement
coming topside for air.

A messenger only
coming from heaven
to shore up our dreams
and take us away.

Speak in a softer language.
Smile without showing your tongue.
It's only me
on a Thursday evening
coming to you
with a bright smile on..

- from "Valentines," 1986
1984, 1988, 1999 by Stanyan Music Group & Rod McKuen. All Rights Reserved
Birthday research by Wade Alexander o Poetry from the collection of Jay Hagan o Coordinated by Melinda Smith
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