Paperboy, Little Neck, Queens, N.Y. 1954-55 - Ron Singer

(Part one of four poems entitled 'Colleagues')

Paperboys lack actual colleagues,
but I was a part-time paper boy,
and my mother, a part-time colleague.
When I’d oversleep, or in bad weather,
she’d rescue me from the steep daily grind.
“Leave the bike home today. I’ll drive, save time.”
That was all; guilt trips were not her way.
(Those were the bailiwick of my father.)

When I was short of friends, she and I played.
I’d kick a soccer ball up the driveway,
mostly relishing the crashing echo
of ball against door. But Mom would bellow
when I tattooed her legs. Now, that’s a friend!
Only with her death would our friendship end.

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Poems by Ron Singer ( have appeared in many publications. He has published nine books, and in 2010-11 he made three trips to Africa for Uhuru Revisited: Interviews with Pro-Democracy Leaders (forthcoming).  His recent book of Maine poems, Look to Mountains, Look to Sea, has won two awards and shall have work featured from it on Coffee Shop Poems.