Twenty-Twenty

Greg Lanier 1962 (Atlanta, GA)



This old house is getting cluttered
And the walls are getting scarred
As I wander through
life’s living room
Of broken Mason jars
And I can’t afford
the rent this month
I drank it in the bar
Ain’t it funny how you see things
twenty-twenty

Ain’t it funny how you see things
twenty-twenty
When you’ve gargled
every dollar, dime and penny
Then the ev’nin’ whistle blows
And you leave in dirty clothes
Ain’t it funny how you see things
twenty-twenty

Sometimes I see a lover’s moon
But most times I see stars
And with bloody feet
I curse the room
Of broken Mason jars
But swear that there’s
A pot of gold
across next valley’s ridge
While I sing these
silly nursery rhymes
And torch another bridge

Ain’t it funny how you see things
twenty-twenty
When you’ve squandered
your last dollar, dime, and penny
Sittin’ on a fence that’s splintered
Wishing for a soul-food dinner
Ain’t it funny how you see things
twenty-twenty

You can always tell a gambler
by his shoes
And he always tips the shine-boy,
win or lose
With his friends right by his side
‘til they drink his bottle dry
Then the band starts playin’
Robert Johnson blues

Ain’t it funny how you see things
twenty-twenty
When you’ve wagered
your last dollar, dime and penny
Put that money on the table
Lady Luck is just a fable
Ain’t it funny how you see things
twenty-twenty

Sittin’ on that fence too long
will drive a soul to shame
Pitchin’ rocks at rusty cars
and playin’ baseball games
Some folks ump
and others coach,
but most stay in the stands
While garbage men
collect the trash
and sometimes wave a hand

I’ve been raising bees
to try and make some money
But the rent is due
until you fetch the honey
Gettin’ stung, but gettin’ paid
Spin the chamber, find the maid
Twenty-twenty
Gun is empty
Ain’t it funny
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Submitted by GregLanier on May 10, 2021

Modified by GregLanier on April 18, 2022

1:43 min read
1,309

Quick analysis:

Scheme axbcDxxxEF EFafxxEF gdxcDdxhixh EFaFajEF jkxkxxgk EFaFllEF xxdxxxxxxx ifbfmmFff
Closest metre Iambic trimeter
Characters 1,839
Words 345
Stanzas 8
Stanza Lengths 10, 8, 11, 8, 8, 8, 10, 9

Discuss the poem Twenty-Twenty with the community...

10 Comments
  • GregLanier
    I really appreciate the community for your support of this work. I almost didn’t post it because I think it’s a bit dark…and too introspective. Who knows where these visions come and why we do what we do. We just know, in a way that it’s hard to explain to non-writer’s, that it’s not a choice. Keep writing and keep supporting all of us that have this blessed curse. 
    LikeReply6 months ago
  • teril
    So powerful. You are a very good writer.
    LikeReply 11 year ago
  • Lost_Snicket
    It really has a good poetic form that gives a clear message! Loved it
    LikeReply 11 year ago
  • rnadc
    Man, that is really well done. "Spin the chamber, find the maid" is great. Is "a lover's moon" a triple entedre?
    LikeReply 11 year ago
  • Symmetry58
    This right here is true poetry. The highs and lows of life and what we perceive during stints of either/or is beautifully described here, Greg. Isn't it amazing how we can gaze an eye upon something during our up moments and it appears as beautiful as hideous during our down times. You are a true poet my friend. 
    LikeReply 22 years ago
    • GregLanier
      Thanks Steve. The visions of life can certainly be a roller coaster ride.

      Remembering Simple Pleasures is great, BTW.
      LikeReply 12 years ago
    • Symmetry58
      Thank you, Greg. Simple Pleasures, as stated in the description, isn't anything too outstanding, but rather just a little something for people to look back on that could perhaps evoke a smile or two.
      LikeReply2 years ago
  • Soulwriter
    Beautifully written.
    LikeReply2 years ago
  • UJ
    My take on it sees an excessive gambler always hoping for that big score. Always seeing his mistakes after it's too late. Nice writing. It kept me engrossed throughout.
    LikeReply 12 years ago
    • GregLanier
      Thanks, UJ. I see it as a description of manic depression; incredibly high for a short expanse while on your drug of choice (booze, gambling, whatever), then incredibly low when consequences smack you between the eyes. 
      LikeReply2 years ago
  • krbalakrishnan
    good poem
    LikeReply2 years ago
  • Leocribs
    I see a 20/20 pass mark on this work . Great work. Thanks for sharing Wow Great poetry. Wow Great poetry. Nice theme. I like Check out my poems too letter to my unborn child on here
    LikeReply2 years ago
  • Soulwriter
    love your work!
    LikeReply 22 years ago
    • GregLanier
      Thanks. Same back at you, Soul. You’re my only fav so far.
      LikeReply 12 years ago
    • Soulwriter
      I'm honoured
      LikeReply2 years ago

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"Twenty-Twenty" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 20 Apr. 2024. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/99599/twenty-twenty>.

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