Ineluctable Blues

by Lewis Turco

"O ineluctable blues of the middle class!
Softly we sing, and the more forgetful hum."
— Donald Justice, from “Sonya Sits at the Piano, Practicing.”

Well, that's the way it is, that's how it was,
Yes, that's the way it is and how it was–
We heard the sun come up, we hear time buzz

Beside the bed and tell us to get up
And shower, go to work and just shut up
About it all, just pour yourself a cup

Of coffee, swallow it and head for work–
Get that black coffee down and off to work,
Try not to bitch, try not to be a jerk.

When you come home, who knows? She might be there
Waiting, maybe not. She might be there,
A hairnet holding back a hank of hair.

"O ineluctable blues of the middle class!"
Whatever that may mean. I'll take a class
In night-school if I get up off my ass

Some evening soon, to work on my B. A.,
Get a better job — or maybe a
"Position" somewhere, as they like to say.

Yeah, fat chance. I'd need a little luck —
I'd need to take a chance, but with my luck
I'd cross the street and get hit by a truck.

Guys like me don't march to a different drum.
Our song's the same old song, it's the same old drum.
"Softly we sing, and the more forgetful hum."