Rodney Marvin "Rod" McKuen
(April 29, 1933 – January 29, 2015)
I was born in the 50's and lived through the 60's. While I never became a hippie or embraced the whole Flower Power generation, certain influences ran strong. One of these is my deep admiration and respect for the poetry of Rod McKuen. I'm not sure what it was that captured my attention. The verses...the pacing...or the maybe it was the pacing of the stanzas.
Last week, Rod passed away. I'm not sure if there's another poet that can fill his shoes. My favorite poem was called "Election". He dedicated it to Sister Mark Sandy. It can be found on page 69 of his volume of poetry "In Someone's Shadow":
I used to wonder why
God only came to visit me on Sunday.
He must have been as bored with me
as I with Him.
One hour once a week was once enough.
God's really hurt nobody but the poor
and still they go voting every year.
An echo not a choice.
I'll deal with death when it comes knocking,
the same is true with God.
Even I don't practice what I preach.
If I believed there were no God
I'd have to face the possibility of no me.
These words still resonate in my soul. Thank you for touching me with your poetry.
Rest in Peace, Rod...you will be missed.