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A Thought for Today

I want simplicity to be my password and my code for caring. Too much time is lost in sorting out the real from what we pass off as real.


Hello Ken, 

Well right now I have a favorite poem. It's one of Rod's unpublished poems, "Rehearsal for a sonnet on your body." 

I'm not sure if we can use this at this time. If we can't use this one, I will find another one. 

Thank you. 


With the arrival of the book/CD version of ASPTL just around the corner there's absolutely no reason why we can't have another sneak preview, Lola. I'm always thrilled when one of the new poems takes center stage and your choice is right up there with some of the best.

Don't know about you but I can't wait to see the final version of the book. Back in 1998, when Rod and I were trying to come up with a name for the web site, he mentioned almost en passant that his new book would be entitled "A Safe Place to Land". Neither of us was thrilled with the site names we'd managed to come up with until that point so it didn't take too much imagination to realize that the perfect name had been staring us in the face all along!

Three years down the line and the book is finally on it's way. Dreams can, and do, come true!

If you have a favorite McKuen song or poem you'd like to share with us, please drop me a line at ken@mckuen.com and I'll do the rest.

                                   - Ken, Johannesburg, February 28

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

Rod McKuen Concerts & Appearances

notable birthdays


Mario Andretti o Stephanie Beacham o Milton Caniff o Ray Dawn Chong o Charles Durning o John Fahey o Ketti Frings o Gilbert Gottfried o Ben Hecht o Brian Jones o Robert Sean Leonard o Eric Lindros o Gavin MacLeod o George Malcolm o Vincente Minnelli o Michael D. Montaigne o Zero Mostel o Linus Pauling o Bernadette Peters o Earl Scheib o Bubba Smith o Joe South o Stephen Spender o Svetlana Stalin o Dorothy Stratten o Tommy Tune o John Turturro 

Rod's random thoughts By leaning on someone you love, you help to hold them up.

Enter into each relationship with trust. Do not be easily convinced that something you want badly enough or believe in will not work. Life works if you work at it.

I wish I had the addresses of all those friends I knew and cared about twenty years ago. I'd like to write each one and say that I'm okay - and more importantly, that I still care.


Were I a priest I'd lay you open
like a rite and stretch you out across
church conversation. I would translate
every limb of you from my mother tongue
to Latin, Greek, Greek orthodox. I'd mouth
your arms as I would Sunday saints in sermon;
sword and three-pronged spear to frighten
newer converts and the little criminals.

                              My lips would linger
on your mouth in word only, but with such
words devout parishioner has yet to hear. My
tongue would curve and turn at talking of the
coil and curvature and kindness of your tongue.

Were I a cardinal, a pope, a bishop used as pawn
I'd do you as a final prayer, then tucking you
beneath my arm be gone from church and
               catechism contradiction and the dawn.


Comes now the taking of the wine and wafers.
                      Whose blood and body is it?
I leave the altar cowardly as week-old custard
crusty and with perspiration round my edges.
The choir goes crazy
                    chanting penance, penance.

If death is sentence
the memory of you lying gently in my head
would still be sentence pronounced but not
                                       said well enough.

                               - from "A Safe Place to Land", 1998

1986, 1998, 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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