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Photo by Bob Gentry ©2001 Stanyan Entertainment

A Thought for Today

There is nothing quite like kindness in this world, we always recognize it when we see it.


I donít know how many of you plan on joining me Saturday Night July 21st in Riverton Wyoming for my concert, but for those making plans to come out west for the event, hereís some news. Eight days later on Sunday evening the 29th of July Iíll be appearing in Santa Fe, New Mexico as part of an all star event to benefit Santa Fe Cares & The Lensic Arts Foundation. Maybe some of you might want to stick around the area for that event too.

While the concert in Riverton is a solo event the benefit is a group effort that includes appearances by Julia Migenes, David Gaines, Sophie B. Hawkins, Julie Budd, Kristine W, Liz Torres and a number of acts still to be announced. Everybodyís favorite not so Hollywood Square Bruce Vilanch will be the Master of Ceremonies.

The event will take place at the historic Lensic Theatre in downtown Santa Fe. The theatre has been closed for two years while an extensive renovation has expanded it into a dazzling new 843-seat state-of-the art performing arts center.

It occurred to me that since many of you are planning to come from other states and countries you might want to bookend an American West vacation with the two shows. Itís just a thought and one Iím thinking seriously about myself.

The American Southwest is one of the most beautiful places anywhere. It has lush National Parks and forests, painted deserts, mesas and mountains, beautiful waterfalls, flowing rivers and rough rapids. There are scenic trails for horseback riding and walking and every modern highway has a scenic view. If I sound like a spokesperson for the chamber of commerce, so be it. This is my home country and Iíve criss-crossed it hundreds of times and still only seen a small part of it.

The culture out here is a rich mixture of American Indian tribes, Aztec and early Mexican lore and the people are fair and friendly. Among the more notable and favorite destinations are the Grand Canyon, Brice, Death Valley, The Grand Tís and for indoor types the famed Santa Fe Opera will be in season. Anyway, think about the possibility of vacationing with me way out west this year.

The Live at the Lensic concert will co-benefit The Lensic Arts Center and Santa Fe Cares, a community foundation helping those living with HIV & AIDS. When I know more about where to send for tickets, Iíll pass the information along.

Americaís first long summer holiday weekend has arrived. Play safely, drive carefully and smile no matter what happens. Try to be with someone you especially like and be nice to them. If you are alone this is, of course, the perfect time to think of those absent. Today a new poem written for and dedicated To One Absent.

Sleep warm.

RM 5/262001 Previously unpublished.

Booking for "An Evening with Rod McKuen" at the Riverton Rendezvous is open! Click below for more details:

Riverton Concert Details

notable birthdays James Arness o Helena Bonham Carter o Peter Cushing o Genie Francis o Al Jolson o Lenny Kravitz o Peggy Lee o Paul Lukas o Frankie Manning o Robert Morley o Brent Musburger o Stevie Nicks o Alexander Pushkin o Sally Ride o Laurance Rockefeller o Jay Silverheels o Teresa Stratas o Norma Talmadge o Philip Michael Thomas o John Wayne o Hank Williams, Jr.
Rod's random thoughts Iíd gladly go down in a whirlpool if all day I had ridden on a friendly wave.

Each of us is earthbound, coming from the stars or wading to the shore. Sailing out, we must sail back Ė even if the voyage stops upon the oceanís bottom or beyond the universe.

Friendship is an idea, not an invention, a pledge, not a promise, and (with any luck at all) a lifetime, not merely a season.


I do not have to be with you
In order to be happy.
Knowing you are there,
          where ever there is, is enough.
To think of you and know that one dayí
                      some day, some when,
weíll be side by side for always
Is all the always that I need just now.

I do not feel this way because
we are apart this moment
I feel the way I do because
I waited for you all my life and so
a few days, years, whatever more
is less than all the years I spent
hoping you would finally come
                                  until you did.

And when you did
however brief the time
we spent within each otherís arms
was time enough to see me through
this absence of you
however long this absence is.

Do I believe you love me?
I never doubt it. I found security
the Sunday I saw love
look back at me from you.
Then is when I knew
it would be you for always. Then
is when the courage came
               that will sustain me
until whatever time has passed
until the time is right for us.

You are who
I think of every morning
and the pillow you I hold to me
throughout the whole of night.

I can wait with patience and I do.

                             I will, until . . .

RM 5/25/2001 ē 1:33 AM ē First publication.

© 1970, 1988, 2001 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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