Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Uniontown, 1980

By Doug Logan

Old Ed dined on Saltines and water
and the waitresses took turns being kind
when he yelled, “Over here, honey,”
because he’d lost his wife and daughter
and, along the way, his mind.
He put a flower behind one ear
and sat down to his cracker stew,
gruff and glowering and without money,
and the girls winked, as they came near,
because winking was the
extra bit that they could do.

Doug Logan is a former editor of Practical Sailor, and has written about boats and the sea for a long time. He began his work in New York as an editor of novels, nautical books, and works on U.S.-Soviet relations. He runs a blog on conservation and alternative energy at, and one with poems at

1 comment:

murchadha said...

This perfect little poem exemplifies, for poetry, the standard that John Gardner set for what he called “moral fiction”:

In a democratic society, where every individual opinion counts, literature's incomparable ability to instruct, to make alternatives intellectually and emotionally clear, to spotlight falsehood, insincerity, and foolishness—literature’s incomparable ability, that is, to make us understand—ought to be a force bringing people together, breaking down the barriers of prejudice and ignorance, and holding up ideals worth pursuing.