Wednesday, December 1, 2021

don't cry, betty

by horace p sternwall

i remember the things i am supposed to remember, and the things i was taught to remember, but i remember other things too.

i remember the spaniards blowing up the maine, and teddy roosevelt charging up san juan hill.

i remember the boys going over there because it would not be over until it was over over there, and hanging the kaiser from an apple tree.

i remember al capone and john dillinger and jesse james riding into tombstone and shooting it out with wyatt earp and billy the kid and ambrose bierce.

i remember pancho villa and the alamo.

i remember the pig lady.

and never giving a sucker an even break.

i remember lucky lindy and moses parting the red sea and jonah and the whale.

i remember andy jackson and the battle of new orleans.

i remember adam and eve and the serpent.

i remember all these things because i was taught them in school or saw them in the funny papers.

but what i really remember is other things, things i got no real call to remember but i just do.

i remember walking down the road one day and these two women were talking and i heard one of them say chattanooga, but when i got closer to them they stopped talking and watched me go by.

i remember being downtown one day outside the drug store and a little girl dropped her ice cream cone on the sidewalk, and a woman, probably her mother, said, don’t cry betty, but betty didn’t look like she was going to cry at all.

i remember wanting to see the tattooed man at the carnival but my grandma saying you don’t want to see that nonsense and pulling me along so i never saw him.

i remember getting on the bus going from mobile to biloxi and i got the last seat on the bus, and i thought, this is my lucky day.

i remember a waitress in a diner in minneapolis and she was just about the fattest person i ever saw but she had a nice smile.

i remember all sorts of things like that.

how about you?

what do you remember?

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