Posts Tagged ‘friend’

This is a re-post, in memory of the eruption of Mt. St. Helens and the loss of a dear friend.


“Down Moon River on a Cement Slab” *

           To Barbara Pierce Morris Seibold   (1947 – 1980)

(Originally written for Barb on her 33rd birthday. Just 2 months later she died in the eruption of Mt. St. Helens on May 18, 1980, along with her husband and two children. She always made me laugh, always found humor in any situation. The last verse was added after she died.)


We had a frog called Inky-Dink

until the pond went dry

and it was time

to go to school.

We threw our homework

in the mud

and laughed

at Mrs. Eagle-Eye.


I slammed your finger

in the locker door,

your nail turned

black and blue.

You laughed

and drained it with a pin

that had a different

point of view.


Then walking home

we yelled at muddy trucks

that splashed our knees

with scum,

and laughing, kicked

fresh Girl Scout cookies

down the street

to spite the crumbs.


On Saturdays

we shopped downtown,

they couldn’t keep us

on the ground.

I lost you

on the 13th floor

but always heard you laughing

through the elevator door.


Dick’s fries were still 11 cents

we ate them

in your green Corvair

and laughed and sang

to KJR

then chased some boys

but not too far.


Once on a dare

we broke into

the secret tunnel

beneath the school.

Our stockings snagged

on gurgling pipes

we swore the air grew hotter

but all the time

we laughed our alma mater.


After senior finals

you threw your gym shoes

from the car.

They landed on a frowning cop

who didn’t want to celebrate.

You laughed

at the $30 fine

and went to graduate.


One day we met

with shining rings

and home grown bellies

laughing at the years gone by.

We drove to show

a favorite teacher

how we’d learned to multiply.


added a few months after Barb died:


No roadblocks ever

held you back

how could you know St. Helen’s

would have heartburn on that day?

She belched,

I felt the earth shake

when you died

and all was ash.

But somehow from deep inside

I know you’ll have the final laugh.


© Betty Hayes Albright 1979, 1980, 2015


*  Title comes from the time a DJ on the radio said, “And now we’re gonna float down Moon River on a cement slab” as he spun that popular song. We laughed till we cried. (Guess you woulda had to be there. 🙂 )



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