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I Built My House

My name is Jamie Lee Hamann and I started sharing poetry articles back in 2013. Every year I share a poem a day in April.


"Tea for the Tillerman"

"Bring Tea for the tiller man

Steak for the sun

Wine for woman who made the rain come

Seagulls sing your heart away

'Cause while the sinners sin, the children play

Oh lord, how they play and play

For that happy day, for that happy day."

Cat Stevens "Tea for the Tillerman"

A First

When in Elementary School I owned a boom box. I had a cassette player with a stereo tuner and a handle to carry the bulky thing. It would not play a cassette if you were walking because the vibration of the movement interrupted the path of the cassette tape in the player and it would jam.

What I loved to do was carry my boom box to school. The class would line up when the bell rang and this is when I would shine. I would set my boom box in line next to me and I would play Michael Jackson's "Beat It" at the highest volume possible.

Michael Jackson's "Beat it" was the first cassette tape I bought, with my own money.I needed to share with the world how cool I was to own it. But Michael Jackson's "Beat It" was not my favorite cassette tape.

At home I had two more cassette tapes that Dad had given me. The first was "The Highwaymen" a great album by Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson, and I cannot remember the other country western artists.

The second cassette tape was "Tea for the Tillerman." My Dad listened to his record for years. He would listen to the album every Sunday when he would cook breakfast for the family. When I got my boom box Dad gave me the cassette.

I listened to this cassette every morning before school and every afternoon when doing my homework. It would be safe to say that this cassette had become the soundtrack to my young life.

I memorized all the words and was deeply moved by quite a few of them. I would sing along with Cat while cleaning my room or playing with my toys. I would hum his tunes when I read and whistled his songs when helping my parents.

Even today, though my musical tastes have changed, Cat Stevens "Tea for the Tillerman" is my favorite album. I still sing his songs and hum them at work. I am still moved by the lyrics.

As I have grown older my tastes have changed quite a bit. When young I loved Rock music I could play loud and feel cool listening too. Now I listen to mostly classical music and jazz.

Where I loved Steven's "Father and Son" has now been replaced with his less attractive songs "Into White" and "Longer Boats."

The following poem "I Built My House" is my small sign of gratitude to Cat Stevens for the positive energy his music has provided me in my life.

I Built My House

I built my house from ancient grain

empty gourds to collect the rain

an herb garden and ordered rows

scarecrows of felt to scare the crows.

Flowers of yellow and flowers of white

as life seems to empty into bright light.

A sad wilted bulb bends over outside

young caterpillar along for the ride

a wandering chicken to quite the sight

as life seems to empty into bright light.

I built my house from ancient grain

empty gourds to collect the rain

as life seems to empty into bright light.

© 2018 Jamie Lee Hamann

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