A Poem by Erren Kelly

Donna Summer…

some days, after daddy
got off work
he would pick me up
and we would go riding around
baton rouge
in his pickup truck
sometimes, he’d wear his work
on his clothes
when we rode around town
others, he would be
clean as the board of health
in a leisure suit
fresh flat top hair cut
with long ass elvis sideburns
and shined floresheim platform shoes
he’d take me to burger king
never mcdonalds
(he only insisted on the best)
and we’d cruise around baton rouge
listening to r and b or
cheesy disco music
which now, doesn’t sound
so bad

my brothers and me roller skated
often,
skinned knees and bloody elbows
didn’t stop us
daddy whipped my ass senseless
once, when he learned
i got caught stealing a playboy magazine
from the 7-11
but it was worth it:
my first time looking at tig o bitties
donna summer was part of the soundtrack
to the plesant moments
of my preteen years

donna summer was a church girl
who managed to be sexy
but never slutty
and she was more grounded
than whitney houston
donna summer wanted to be
the queen of rock
but record company executives
let tina turner have that title
donna accepted disco
as a consolation prise
but donna became famous
and ended up making rock songs
anyway
donna summer had integrity
you never heard anything bad about her
her death came out of left field
which makes it more disturbing
no matter how long you live
life is too short
my friend in north carolina
(whom i’ve known since she was a
jailbait teenager, is now approaching the dirty 30s)
sent me a picture of her
wearing platform shoes
(minus the goldfish)
she is one of those friends
you can stop talking to for a few years
hook up with again
and continue
as if nothing happend
we’re like jordan and pippen or starsky and hutch

you thank god for buds like that

she wasn’t even born during disco
and yet i picture her as a mirrorball baby
i gave her some advice
my mom gave to me
which left me scratching my head
but finally made sense years later

don’t be in a hurry to get old

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About Erren Kelly

A former Ray’s Road Review contributor, Erren Kelly received his B.A. in English-Creative Writing from Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge. His work has appeared in a number of magazines, such as Hiram Poetry Review, Mudfish, Poetry Magazine [online], Ceremony, Cactus Heart, Similar Peaks, Gloom Cupboard, Poetry Salzburg, and anthologies such as In Our Own Words, A Generation X Poetry Anthology, Fertile Ground, and Beyond The Frontier. He is also the author of a chapbook titled Disturbing The Peace, published by Night Ballet Press. He loves to read and travel, having visited 45 states, Canada, and Europe.