I met up with Godfrey at his table neath the tree, I was living deep within the park, that summer of poetic infamy.
All my life there was always someone better, smarter, faster than me- except at Scrabble..One day in dignified silence I played word for word with Godfrey.Crapinon, he spelled, Quorn I spelled him back, Puckfist, Shallots, Cat, oarlock, neither of us giving in, we played around the clock. Impedimentia, fornacitre, when we took a break to use the Loo, I won the round with Zax, as many people do.
I deal with the world by retreating from it,I dispense free advice from the fringes of society. My parents were both loggers felled young by a tree.My siblings and I raised by a bigoted Great Aunt.She gave us green biscuits with a dog on the box, potato peel stuffing, nasty bananas , rotten and black. My siblings bolted soon as they could get free- bolted and never looked back. They were better, smarter, faster than me.
…Godfrey spelled Oasthouse, (a thatched hut for drying hops), Chrysanthema, I spelled, shoulder checking for the cops.Took a swig from the paper bag down by my knee, CrysanthAemum , winning the game corrected Godfrey. I told him of the years I spent, fixing cars, driving truck, cooking on the big ships out at sea. I worked hard but there was always someone, better, smarter, faster than me. Godfrey sat back and thought what he called his ‘”Long Thots”, he said well Larry , sometimes life’s a plaid blanket and warm, dry socks. Some days are like the biscuits with the dog on the box, cold and hard with nasty bits, difficult to get through.Never lose that sense of humor, it will always get you through. And Larry when it comes down to the important things, like, laughter, Scrabble, warm fires, and the advice you give for free, There is no one better, smarter, faster than you, remember me, and this summer of poetic anarchy.
Larry taught him to build a campfire anywhere in wind and rain, he said lets’ go young hobo, to the rail yards east of main, you must learn how to safely hop a moving train… Years later it was asked of me, Worzel, what companion on the road touched his life the most? He said there were many, but but for trust and friendship,humor, free advice and his worn out Scrabble set, Larry the Free Advice Wino gave me skills I would need to survive and words I would never forget. And in the end it was Larry who said it, he said” GODFREY IS ALIVE- THERE IS A WIND THAT NEVER DIES”.