Fred Astaire - A Poem

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In through the door

walked the man with the cane

By the cut of his clothes

you could tell he was vain

*

There was just something about

how he pulled out his chair

That guy, oh, wait is

that Fred Astaire

*

He snapped his fingers

and ordered a coffee

Then called to the waitress

I like mine frothy

*

The waitress came over

and set his coffee down

Then he took up his cane and

tapped on the ground

*

She turned her head

when she heard the sound

He grabbed her hand

and spun her around

*

He placed his foot

against the closet chair

This man, this dancer,

This Fred Astaire

*

He pushed it away

with pizzazz and some flare

Spun her so hard

showed her red underwear

*

Her skirt flew out

flat as a saucer

She spun so fast

Hey wait, is that Ginger Rogers

*

His feet slipped and they glided

as he leaned on his cane

He admired her legs

thoughts drifting to how to obtain

*

Throughout the café

music decorated the air

That music made her feel like she

danced in Time Square

*

He felt charming and dashing

And quite debonair

She looked and pondered

His thinning brown hair

*

He looked at her face

And saw it was frosty

And thought, hey

I just came in for damn cup of coffee

*

Through the window they

Saw it’d started to rain

The music stopped and

He put down his cane

*

So he sat there at Café Frankfurt

Located on Main

And patiently waited

For the afternoon train


Fred and Audrey Hepburn
Fred and Audrey Hepburn | Source

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64 comments

Alastar Packer profile image

Alastar Packer 10 months ago from North Carolina

"...if you wanna eat you gotta dance like Fred Astaire...] Remember Leo Sayer's '70s song? This is a marvelous poem and homage to the master of dance. Thanks, Mike. There will never be another one like him.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 10 months ago from Southern Illinois

Oh, how much did I love this? A bunch! You are so very creative. I've missed your poetry. Now I'll go watch the video....


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 10 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Hello Alastar Packer. Good to see you. Fred Astaire was one of a kind. I published this to get away from being 'only' the guy who publishes a story every week where someone dies. So, here it is.


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 10 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Hello Ruby. Happy Saturday. Thank you for stopping by for a smile here at this light-hearted poem. Enjoy your day.


marcoujor profile image

marcoujor 10 months ago from Jeffersonville PA

F- "May I have this dance?"

G- Is he after romance?

F- Lemme sneak a glance...

G- "Maybe, let's take a chance!"

Starting to love Saturday mornings... ;)


snakeslane profile image

snakeslane 10 months ago from Canada

Nice, really really nice :)


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 10 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Hello mar. Thanks for adding some spice to the Fred and Ginger Show. That brought a smile. Happy Saturday.


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 10 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Good morning snakeslane. Thank you. I needed to publish something light. Have a great Saturday.


annart profile image

annart 10 months ago from SW England

What a great story via a wonderful poem, following the rhythm of a dance from Fred. His dancing was so effortless, wasn't it? If only it was that easy! I could watch him, alone or with Ginger Rogers, all day.

Your poetry is as good as your stories, Mike.

Ann


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 10 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Thanks Ann. Happy Saturday. Yes, Fred was light on his feet. I always liked the quote, I think by Ginger Rodgers. It went something like, "She did everything Fred Astaire did, only in heels and backwards."

Yes, if only it was that easy. When I dance, people act as though I was doing stand up comedy.


annart profile image

annart 10 months ago from SW England

I learnt to dance when I went on a cruise to Norway; I love it (though I'm not at all accomplished) and hope to do more.

I love that quote!

Happy Saturday to you too.

Ann


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 10 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Hello Ann. Sounds like you had a wonderful time on your cruise to Norway. It sounds like a memorable experience.

It is a nice quite.


annart profile image

annart 10 months ago from SW England

It was fantastic and we saw what we went for - the Northern Lights! Amazing!


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 10 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Ann it sounds like a glorious trip. Glad you enjoyed yourselves.


PoetwoPoem profile image

PoetwoPoem 10 months ago from Dallas

Beautiful poem, I saw it so vividly in my imagination. Thank you for sharing.


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 10 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Hello PoetwoPoem. Thanks for visiting this corner of the world this evening. This was just a light and breezy piece. Glad you enjoyed it.


billybuc profile image

billybuc 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

I wonder how many hours I sat in front of the tv and watched this man dance when I was a kid? He was a dazzler, and so is this tribute.


MartieCoetser profile image

MartieCoetser 10 months ago from South Africa

Oh, Fred Astair is a legend!

I love the words and the rhythm of this very vivid poem.

Thank you, Mck!


Genna East profile image

Genna East 10 months ago from Massachusetts, USA

This poem is such a charmer, Mike! I enjoyed it and the video immensely. Thank you. :-)


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 10 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Hello Bill - Fred Astaire was such a good entertainer. He usually played parts that were meant to lift our spirits. Movies don't seem to do that now-a-days.

Happy Sunday.


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 10 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Hello Martie - Happy Sunday. Fred Astairecould dance-dance-dance. What could be more cheerful than that.


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 10 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Good morning Genna. This is just a light piece. I needed to publish something different. Enjoy your Sunday


PegCole17 profile image

PegCole17 10 months ago from Dallas, Texas

Those were the days when dancing was beautiful! I love Fred Astaire and those old movies and songs. Aunt Helen and Aunt Louise took dance lessons at his studio in Ft. Worth and went on international ballroom dance tournaments. They even won a few awards. Oh, what fun to remember. They even paid for a couple of lessons for their niece with two left feet.

And what a great way to capture the times in your happy and fun poem. Watching the music video now. Two thumbs up.


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 10 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Hello Peg. I always envied those that could dance. I have no rhythm. Fred Astaire and a few others made it look so easy and graceful.

So, nice that Aunt Helen and Aunt Louise were blessed with grace. How cool that they went to competitions and even one a few ribbons. Life can be rich.

Thanks for the visit this afternoon.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

Good to see more poetry from you Mike, and such a fun poem at that. Fred and Ginger what a couple.


marcoujor profile image

marcoujor 10 months ago from Jeffersonville PA

Came back to watch Swing Time again before I dance myself into dreamland.

Good night, dear Mike and thanks for making me smile. Hugs, mar


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 10 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Hello John. Yes, this was just a light poem just to deliver smiles. Thanks for joining in the fun.


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 10 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Hello mar. Yes the dancers in the video are light on their feet and make it look so easy. Have a good night.


Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

Gypsy Rose Lee 10 months ago from Riga, Latvia

This made me smile. A really great tribute to Fred Astaire.


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 10 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Hello Gypsy. Nice to know I sent a smile your way.


Shyron E Shenko profile image

Shyron E Shenko 10 months ago

Mike, as the music plays in my head

in the visual it is not Ginger, it is me instead

I am glad that it was Fred

And so happy he is the one that lead

*

*

one of my favorites, thank you Mike, I guess you know I love poetry.

Blessings my friend.


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 10 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Shyron was earth bound no more

as her feet slid across the floor

Fred spun her with such practiced ease

The audience called, ‘more please’


savvydating profile image

savvydating 10 months ago

Well! This is a fun change. Yes, I do admire those who are lite on their feet. Dancing is so joyous.

Your poem is a lovely tribute to two of our beloved American stars. My own son is a professional dancer.

Please forgive me, but after I watched the video I felt that my offspring's critique would be, "Hey Fred, get those shoulders back and...chest up." Yeah, ballet dancers are picky that way.

Lovely poem, dear mckbirdbks!


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 10 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Hello savvydating - Hope you are well. Yes, I needed a 'fun' change, this was just a light and easy piece of writing. The pen must have found me in a rare light mood.

How interesting, your son makes you very proud. I wish him a successful career.

I did not even see the rhythm line when they were passing out attributes.


savvydating profile image

savvydating 9 months ago

Ha. Me neither. My son got his rhythm from his dad. Actually, my son is semi-retired, having already danced with American Repertory Ballet. But he is still considered a "professional." :)

If I don't drop by before then, I hope you have a delightful Valentines Day!!


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 9 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Hi savvydating. It requires a lot of talent to make it as a dancer, so your son did well. He has that on his resume, now on to new challenges.

Thank you for the Valentines Day greetings - most appreciated.


Faith Reaper profile image

Faith Reaper 9 months ago from southern USA

Hahaha ...oh, how delightful, Mike!

You've written a brilliant poem in such a way that makes one feel as if we are there being twirled around with Fred Astaire!

You are becoming my favorite poet here on HP ...hmm, keep these babies coming.

I think you penned this one just right, even to Fred's character.

Bravo!


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 9 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Hello Theresa. I needed something lighter in the mix. Can't make you all cry every week. haha

I am happy that you are finding some time for yourself and your writing. (I am a little bias about your writing.)


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 9 months ago from Shelton

This was fantastic.. I loved it


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 9 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Thank you Frank. Just a light piece to get away from the darker pieces I have been writing.


Patty Inglish, MS profile image

Patty Inglish, MS 9 months ago from North America

This poem is a total vision of a movie sequence I would like to see. Too bad Fred and Ginger are no longer with us - nor that type of movie.

Around about WWII, my mother and other women her age not working in factories taught dancing at Fred Astaire and Arthur Murray schools of dancing here. I never learned to dance, but I enjoy watching, especially Fred.


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 9 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Hello Patty. What a nice comment. It does a persons heart good to watch good dancing. That explains all the dance movies that are made each year. The world was so different around the second world war. I think it cool that your Mom taught dancing.

I am a terrible dancer.

Thank you for your visit today.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 9 months ago from Central Florida

Show business today doesn't hold a candle to the likes of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. Thanks for bringing some real entertainment to these pages, Mike!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 9 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

Fred is the all-time King of dance....no doubt about it. Your poetic tribute is perfect, Mike. Nothing more attractive to women than a man who can twirl her across the floor. To some it comes quite naturally. IMHO, everyone would benefit by learning to dance. It's one of those simple pleasure in life we have too few of....

Your wonderful writing talent is another pleasure!


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 9 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Hello Sha. I keep saying as a point of argument that 'things aren't getting better and better'. Here again in the movies this holds true. Maybe the difference is between entertainment, and what ever it is they are doing now. Thanks for the visit.


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 9 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Hello Paula. I agree Fred does command the top spot. I know a couple of people who have 'dived' into dance and found real escape from their worlds. I will take your word for it coming quite naturally to some. I am not in that group. I am s show stopper, but for the wrong reasons.

Thank you for that nice compliment. You are much appreciated.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 9 months ago from Southern Illinois

I just had to come back and watch Fred and Ginger dance

I wonder if by chance

I could dream that Fred took me for a spin?

He would hold me close and I would attempt to hide my silly grin

He might even ask me to sit awhile

Of course I would say " yes " and my grin would become a sexy smile.

Hee....


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 9 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Ruby, I think it’s be grand

If Fred took your sweet hand

And lead you to spin on the floor

where there would be smiles galore


Kathleen Kerswig 9 months ago

Great poem! I studied tap and jazz for 16 years and Fred Astaire was someone I could watch dance for hours. Thank you for this beautiful reminder of the days when I threw all of my energy into tapping my heart out. Blessings!


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 9 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Hello Kathleen Kerswig what a nice way to spend your time and energy. What great memories you have. Thanks for sharing your time and a bit of dance!


annart profile image

annart 4 weeks ago from SW England

Came to this and saw that I'd already read it! It's just as good second time around and one can feel the rhythm of his dance - wonderful!

Ann


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 4 weeks ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Hello Ann - thanks for revisiting this. One of the few 'fun' reads I have presented.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 weeks ago from Southern Illinois

I followed Ann to watch Ginger and Fred dance again

Do you see the need for more poetry like this my friend?

I'm so tired of this election season

I needed a smile, so that's the reason

I tapped my toes

To get rid of these woes

I voted two days ago

It stopped me from wanting to blow

Go Hillary, go!


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 4 weeks ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Hello Ruby, Oh what a thrill

Guess, you and I will

just have to wait until

That not too far off election day

and see what the people are going to say

then we will know if it is safe to stay

right here in the U.S. of A.

...

Many think, we are already a dump, they ain't

seen nothing until they see Donald Trump

We are going to miss our President Obama

and head into times so filled with drama

...

Nearing the end, running out of rhyme

If we don't elect Clinton it will be a crime

So come on people go and have your say

right here in the U.S. of A.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 weeks ago from Southern Illinois

Lordy you got my rhyme mode going crazy

Remember the pre stroke tizzy of ' Driving Miss Daisey '

I'm there! I need Morgan Freeman to soothe my sense's

If Trump wins, I will be a ' Rebel with a cause '

My sweetness will evaporate, showing my too many flaws

I can't give anymore money

Even when the DNC calls me their liberal honey

If Hillary loses my B/P is sure to go sky high

I'll probably stroke like Miss Daisy and die

But I heard it through the grape line, she ' ain't gonna lose

Cause Trump's snorting is gonna blow a fuse

Talk about a rigged election

We liberals are gonna need protection

When we take to the streets shouting sweet victory

I'm out of words. What rhymes with victory?


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 weeks ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

Hmmmm, Ruby, I just happen to catch this while checking to see if I'd already read Mike's poem ( I did). What rhymes with Victory?? I guess it would to be 2 words like "good story" "sick story"..."hick story"?????/ LOL. I think I need a nap. I'm getting silly!


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 4 weeks ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Oh Ruby you do as you please

You rhyme with incredible ease

Just hope that the works don't all freeze

or we'll all be eating government cheese

....

We look to a change at the top

and are offered an old orange mop

it is only the vote that will stop

hope the Democrates don't belly flop

...

Be on the right side of history

remove the dark veil of mystery

and winters all windy and blistery

and vote for a Hillary victory


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 4 weeks ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Hi Paula - I woke from my nap. Just missed you being silly. Have a good weekend.


Shyron E Shenko profile image

Shyron E Shenko 4 weeks ago

Fred Astaire sure had flair

When he waltzed across the floor

It was like a dancing affair

As he held Ginger just right

And every man’s daughter

And every man’s wife

Would give their eye tooth

To be Ginger tonight

I was lifted right out of my seat

Then swept right off my feet

And I was dancing on air with Fred Astaire

We danced to the victory the election complete

The Donald will not be taking the Presidential seat

*

*

Mike this is just as good the second and third time around.

Blessings and hugs my friend.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 weeks ago from Southern Illinois

Oh no Shyron, while you danced the night away

The orange twit groped ten senior women today

He is now in jail awaiting his trial date

Crying like a baby knowing his fate

Melenia has flown the coop

His kids standing in line, begging for soup

Their dog Spinee happy and feeling relief

He knew living in the white house would only bring grief

The Thump Tower sold to pay back taxes

Putin refusing to take any more calls of faxes

I'd say the Don has hit rock bottom

While our gal Hillary Rodham

Is tasting sweet victory

Sitting in the oval office sipping a cup of tea.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 weeks ago from Southern Illinois

Mike, please forgive me. Shyron made me do it, plus MSNBC just announced the FBI is under investigation for possible Russian involvement in the election.

If this doesn't end soon

I'll be as crazy as a loon.


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 4 weeks ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

Line up ladies, D. Trump is near

He does not want to listen or hear

And he’s not interested in your ear

Lean on the bar, while he judges your rear

Line up ladies, Trump’s in the building

And beware all, you should be shielding

the rights you’ve gained, or you’ll be yielding

to the alpha male, who should be a gelding

Line up ladies, Trump is is no colt

When the voting booths open, it’s time to bolt

It’s time for crime, its time for an electric jolt

You can simply go and vote


Shyron E Shenko profile image

Shyron E Shenko 4 weeks ago

Ruby and I are lined up and voted

But, we are not exposing our rump to trump

In fact we are ready to pull it from beneath him

The proverbial stump

Malania, went to work in the USA

Without a work visa to earn her pay

Then with the Golden orange goose she would lay

So he would not deport her from the USA

Giuliani and trump cooked quite a scheme

With the help of the FBI and the weiner thing

As Giuliani boasts of his ties to the FBI

To blame something else on Hillary they would sure try

The weiner sent an email attachment

Giuliani and trump thinking this is it

To nail Clinton on that they are hell-bent

What is in the e-mail? I’ll give you a hint

A sext message from Weiner was sent

Of him in his superman underwear

He could not go naked because then we would know

Weiner had nothing to show


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 4 weeks ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas Author

We all know this is only a game

Both candidates are mostly just lame

but all in all its mostly a shame

We have no one but ourselves to blame

...

Anthony Weiner wanted to play

Truth be told, he had nothing to say

On Tuesday, he will likely go away

We'll be stuck with results, come what may

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