Cover to Cover with Jack Foley & Nina Serrano

Cover to Cover with Jack Foley & Nina Serrano – June 5th, 2019

“Longest way round is shortest way home”—James Joyce.


Today’s show is another round with that spectacular, sparkling, sparring pair of roustabouts, Nina Serrano and Jack Foley, all awhirl with rigmarole and wordly wisecracks. They’ve been around for many a year, roundly producing round ups of poetry and opinion, song and snappy patter, honey sweet and sour sober. Expect the unexpected. Not even they will know what passes for news on the Trumpfront and many another. If a president is impeached will he be impaired? Round and round it goes, and where it stops nobody knows.


Here is Nina:


Dear New Friend


Thank you dear new friend

You see me as I want to be seen

in technicolor

dangling stones shells and scarves

a living homage to Isadora Duncan Frida Kahlo

and Gertrude Stein in flat sturdy supportive shoes

ready to take on the old boy club from the left or the right

Also Meridel LeSeur feminist working class writer

of immigrant Minnesota

resurrected by the second wave of feminists in her very old age

And Mary Rudge beloved Poet Laureate of Alameda

Dear New Friend overlooking kindly my limping

confusion forgetfulness and curving back

difficulty getting up and down

head thrust forward by the years

of peering into a future that has now arrived

Dear New Friend

so much living piled behind me and my poems

My stuffing spills out unbidden with scraps of knowledge and stories

The impact of changing diapers folding laundry

and long bedside vigils still defines me

I seek the eyes of babies passing in strollers and carriers

to smile at them

so they know they are recognized and welcome

My public self a peacock

my private self a homing pigeon

resting her head under a tucked wing

A tamed canary singing indoors

tunes picked up like a parrot from the social ambience

I enjoy the re-invention of myself as an octogenarian

a rare breed in the history of the human race

Death beckons

but I ignore his cues and signals

He has to catch me first

and then hang on because

I’m learning how to slip away

so I can go out and play

with my Dear New Friend

and all of her friends


And this is from Jack:




Oh, Mr. Gallagher

Mr. Shean

Oh, Mr. Gallagher

Yes, I’m here

Have you heard about our latest president

Well, what’s the news

He bans every bird and man, oh,

That comes back from Capistrano

I believe that he’d abscond with all my rent

Oh, Mr. Shean

Mr. Shean

He’s a president who’s very low and mean

If you take a second look

You’ll conclude that he’s a crook

No compassion, Mr. Gallagher

He’s a tyrant, Mr. Shean



Oh, Mr. Gallagher

Yes, hello

Mr. Gallagher

I’m still listening

Have you heard of Mr. Mueller’s new report

What of Trump?

How he greases Russian wheels

And makes very shady deals

I believe that he will end up in the court

Oh, Mr. Shean,

Mr. Shean,

He will soon go down just like a submarine

The subpoenas all he ducks

They say justice he obstructs

He’s a sly one, Mr. Gallagher

He’s an outlaw, Mr. Shean



Oh, Mr. Gallagher

I am he

Mr. Gallagher

Can’t you see

I am really quite a patriot at heart

Yes, you are

You see, Liberty’s not static

It is rich and democratic

There’s room for everyone to play a part

Oh, Mr. Shean,

Mr. Shean,

I’d say I know exactly what you mean

Though I rarely ever brag

I salute and love the flag

It’s America, Mr. Gallagher

Land of Liberty, Mr. Shean



Oh, Mr. Gallagher

Mr. Shean

Mr. Gallagher

I’m right here

How I love that word, it’s called Diversity

A fine word!

We began our country thus

It became our biggest plus

I love to sing “Our country ’tis of THEE”

Oh, Mr. Shean

Oh, Mr. Shean

I believe you’ve hit it strictly on the bean

I am Irish, you’re a Jew

Mexicans and Muslims too

Don’t forget the ones from Africa—

They are great ones, Mr. Shean



Oh, Mr. Gallagher

Mr. Shean

Mr. Gallagher

Mr. Shean

There are other voices singing our old song

Yes, there are

I can hear them day and night

Making rhymes the way we might

Do you think that anyone will sing along?

Oh, Mr. Shean

Mr. Shean

It’s the action of the phonograph machine

We are dead and gone to glory

Someone else must tell our story

They sing proudly, Mr. Gallagher

We’re still living, Mr. Shean


(bis) They sing proudly, Mr. Gallagher

We’re still living, Mr. Shean


With apologies to the spirits of Ed Gallagher (1873-1929) and Al Shean (1868-1949).


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