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Short Poem about First Impressions and Living in the 1960s

I live in Houston and have worked as a nurse. I have a lifelong passion for traveling, nature, and photography (preferably all together!).

Amaryllis in full bloom

Amaryllis in full bloom

First Impressions

Below is a small poem titled First Impressions that was composed when I was in high school many years ago.

Yes I can still remember that far back. (Smile)

For some reason I have always remembered this little poem and the sentiments expressed ring true in an everlasting fashion.

Cherished are the friendships that have been formed throughout the years with many people of different cultures coming from all walks of life.

Differences between people only serve to enlighten and enrich each others experiences. Haven't you found that to be true?

Cyclamen in bloom

Cyclamen in bloom

Here is my poem:

"First impressions are not always the best,

Finer distinctions are formed from the rest.

Monarch butterfly photo taken at the Houston Zoo.

Monarch butterfly photo taken at the Houston Zoo.

First impressions, often prejudiced and rude,

Given more time are mellowed and soothed.

My original pencil drawing of a Golden Retriever.  Who wouldn't love that face?

My original pencil drawing of a Golden Retriever. Who wouldn't love that face?

With time comes understanding, interest, even love,

And who, being in haste, would forgo the above?"



Hopefully you (the reader) enjoyed this tiny poem about First Impressions and think about it the next time when meeting someone new.

Who knows how that person may enrich one's life or teach lessons one may never learn in any other way?

Life is short. Embrace changes that come along one's pathway of life. Live, learn and love!


This was the decade when my younger brothers and I were in high school. The times were turbulent. The draft was in full effect and the Vietnam war was raging.

Draft dodging was not only talked about but was also done by some young men who fled to countries like Canada to avoid entering the war which was very unpopular with many people.

Protests against the war were held on many college campuses across the nation. Draft cards were publicly burned as were bras which went hand in hand with the woman's lib movement.

Having come from a family where both grandfathers had participated in the military as well as my dad, my brothers continued in service to country spanning the years from World War I, and World War II to Vietnam.

My brother John had enlisted in the Navy and my youngest brother Jim in the Army. Both saw service in Vietnam.


The hippie movement was in full force and they often sported long unkept hair, used drugs for recreation and promoted the idea of sexual freedom.

Rock music was their favorite form of entertainment and Woodstock where hundreds of thousands of them gathered in a field in New York epitomizes that movement at its height.

The Cuban Missile Crisis

The Cuban Missile Crisis and the Bay of Pigs brought our nation and Cuba with the supporting Soviet Union to the brink of war.

At the same time the Berlin Wall was being built separating the country of Germany into the communist ruled east side from the west side which was free.

JFK Assassination

My dear grandmother who was like a second mother to me died in 1963.

That was the same year President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Texas on November 22nd making the Vice-President Lyndon Johnson the automatic President of the U.S.

Whoever was alive during that sad day which shocked the nation will never forget those images portrayed over and over again on television. The blood stained pink suit of Mrs. Kennedy, the swearing in of a very sober faced Lyndon Johnson aboard Air Force One as he was being flown back to Washington, D.C., those are images which are seared into our memories for those of us who witnessed them.

The Civil Rights Movement

The Civil Rights movement was both peaceful and turbulent.

Sit ins and speeches regarding what was right and just for the black members of our society occurred. There were also race riots where buildings, businesses and cars were burned as happened in the infamous Watts Riots in Los Angeles, California which ended up with hundreds of millions of dollars of damages and 34 deaths.

More riots in different cities would follow with more public destruction of things with injuries and deaths of people.

Dr. Martin Luther King who now has a memorial statue in Washington, D.C. was a voice for reason and peaceable change during these times. Sadly he was assassinated in April of 1968 by a sniper's bullet in Memphis, Tennessee.

In June of that same year Senator Robert F. Kennedy who was the brother of President Kennedy and who also had Presidential ambitions was also assassinated.

Moon Landing

The 1960s did have some memorable moments that were not at all sad.

We saw astronaut John Glenn circle the earth three times in 1962. Our space adventures had us landing on the moon in 1969 with astronauts Neil Armstrong and Edwin E. Aldrin, Jr.

The famous statement uttered to something like 600 million people watching television from all around the world by Neil Armstrong was the following: "That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind." That was a proud moment in time!

My fraternal grandmother often remarked that she was amazed in what had transpired during her days. She had lived from the horse and buggy days to learning to drive those early automobiles and seeing the Wright Brothers first fly an airplane to viewing a man walking on the moon. She could hardly believe the advances!


Music of the 1950s

The music of the 1950s was being sung by people like some of the following:

  • Pat Boone
  • Paul Anka
  • Johnny Mathis
  • Ricky Nelson
  • Elvis Presley
  • Perry Como and more.

The United States truly underwent a cultural change in the 1960s and would never be quite the same. My little poem was created during those times of my teenage years of growing up and still rings true today.

Elvis Presley and Ed Sullivan in New York City, October 26, 1956

Elvis Presley and Ed Sullivan in New York City, October 26, 1956

Music of the 1960s

The Beatles had crossed the Atlantic and had most of America playing their music. I remember discussing with my girlfriends which of the Beatles we thought was the cutest.

Chubby Checker's "The Twist" had many of us gyrating to his music and others like the Beach Boys, The Supremes, Bob Dylan, Peter, Paul and Mary, Sonny and Cher, Righteous Brothers, Neil Diamond and others too many to mention all kept us entertained.

Press photo of The Beatles during Magical Mystery Tour.

Press photo of The Beatles during Magical Mystery Tour.

A Decade of Changes

It was a far cry from the 1950s when we were growing up as children.

The times had changed and would never be the same. Back in those days we were watching television shows like some of the following:

  • Father Knows Best
  • Leave it to Beaver
  • The Lone Ranger
  • The Ed Sullivan Show
  • Bonanza
  • I Love Lucy to name just a few.
 Publicity photo of Clayton Moore as the Lone Ranger and his horse Silver

Publicity photo of Clayton Moore as the Lone Ranger and his horse Silver

© 2008 Peggy Woods

Comments are welcomed!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 22, 2020:

Hi Dale,

Those of us who lived through the 1960s will never forget them. Many noteworthy things took place at that time.

Dale Anderson from The High Seas on September 21, 2020:

I missed the 60's Peggy but I bet this sure was a wonderful reminder for those that lived through them.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 19, 2020:

Hi Larry,

You must be somewhere close to my age if you remember what was happening in the 1960s. I am glad that viewing my drawing of a golden retriever brings happy memories for you. They are such sweet animals!

Larry on September 19, 2020:

The 1960's were turbulent times, but yet exciting as life for many of us was just really getting started. Seeing the golden retriever illustration brought back pleasant memories.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 10, 2020:

Hi Devika,

I graduated from high school in the mid-1960s and went on to college. The 1960s were turbulent years in many respects. I am glad that you got a snapshot view of them here.

Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on September 10, 2020:

I wouldn't know about living in the 60s. Through the poems I understand your first impressions and this tells me of how life was back in the 60s.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on January 09, 2020:

Hi Donna,

We can both relate to much more simple times, and as far as I am concerned, it was good. We both share beautiful memories of those days from what you wrote. Thanks for the compliment!

Donna Rayne from Greenwood, Indiana on January 07, 2020:

I was born in 1964 but my mother played music from those days and 50's music as well. I grew up in a home of nostalgia and my mom even taught me how to dance in our living room. Vinyl plaid and life were simple and easy. Respect was ordinary and we obey our elders, oh and the food was fabulous, simple but mighty tasty. Life was good and good was life and I take these memories where ever I go and that's how I learned to write poetry before I even could write words at 5 years old.

Memories are the past treasures that we pass along to our children and we also teach them about first impressions and I really enjoyed your poems. You are a beautiful writer and I admire that about you, Peggy!


Donna Rayne

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on October 29, 2018:

Hi Shyron,

Those were certainly tense days back in the 1960s on many fronts. Of course today is certainly presenting us with new and disturbing challenges...almost on a daily basis it seems. Thanks for your poetic comment.

Shyron E Shenko from Texas on October 28, 2018:

Peggy, your lovely poem makes me want to go back

Back to a time when I thought someone unkind

And maybe I could unwind

The tension that so tightly binds

And from each face the tension lines



Blessings my friend.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on October 14, 2018:

Hi Ethel,

The 1960s were turbulent times for many people. I agree that it was good to be young. Ha! As to the dog drawing, I grew up drawing things just for fun with a girlfriend who later became an art teacher. We both enjoyed creating art as youngsters.

Ethel Smith from Kingston-Upon-Hull on October 14, 2018:

Lovely little poem. Never judge a book by its cover. Talented lady - the dog sketch is very good. Thanks for memories of the 1960s. It was a great time to be young though not without sadness and troubles.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on July 21, 2018:

Hi C E Clark,

Those memories are certainly imprinted upon our brains for those of us who lived and experienced those days in the 1960s.

C E Clark from North Texas on July 20, 2018:

A walk down memory lane! I love this piece, and the photos AND your drawing are excellent!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on July 16, 2018:

Hi Rajan,

The 1960s truly were filled with all kinds of events that were life changing for many people. Thanks for your comment.

Rajan Singh Jolly from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on July 16, 2018:

The poem rings so true. First impressions should never be the last. The 1960's were very eventful, events that changed history, some good and some bad.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on July 13, 2018:

Hi Patricia,

I still remember my mother's drawings when I was a child. Her dogs, cows, horses, etc. all pretty much looked alike. Ha ha! We would all sit around the kitchen table drawing things together. Those were fun days. Yes I did draw that dog. I grew up drawing things with a nearby girlfriend. She later became an art teacher while I became a nurse.

Patricia Scott from North Central Florida on July 12, 2018:

Sweet and to the point your little poem....the line "With time comes understanding, interest, even love," says it all. And the pup picture....you drew that? YOU are so talented. My pup drawings look like circles and triangles (for ears) and stick legs. Thanks for sharing your poetry. Angels once again are headed your way ps

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on November 20, 2017:

Hi Roberta,

I do wish that more people would learn lessons from history. Perhaps we would be in a better place today?

Like you, for the same reasons you stated, we have no need to be tested for Hepatitis C.

Thanks for the compliment on my drawing. I have created quite a bit of art and have participated in shows over the years.

I am glad that you like this little poem of mine. Apparently others do also since it has been copied widely and is on the Internet. I have given up trying to get the stolen content removed. Only so much time in a day!

RTalloni on November 20, 2017:

Though first impressions do last with other people, your poem is quite well done and worthy of thoughtful consideration. If only everyone would always operate from its perspective! As well, your lab drawing is just excellent. So glad you shared them here. Hope you continued with these hobbies because your talent is evident.

It's a thoughtful exercise to connect dots to the cultural changes Americans gave themselves to and what we face today in the consequences. One of the most obvious kinds is that some doctors say all baby boomers should get tested for hepatitis C (though I don't agree for not all chose the drugged up, polygamous lifestyle). The more subtle consequences involve sheer confusion about the differences in how men and women respond to all aspects of life, leading to a strange so-called diversity that calls for everyone to be the same.

So many things worked together to bring society to the point it is now at, giving lots to think and write about. But, personally and collectively, our history is what it is. The question is, will we learn from it or not?

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on April 21, 2016:

Hi Robert,

Yes...those days of the 1960s were certainly rapidly changing times!

Robert Sacchi on April 19, 2016:

A nice poem, so true. A good look back at the 1960. It was amazing how much things changed from 1/1/60 - 12/31/69.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on August 29, 2015:

Hi Au fait,

The 1960's were indeed turbulent but so are these days with terrorism rampant all across the globe. Kennedy's death was certainly a shock to all of us. Assassinations of that type rarely happen in this country thank heavens. Thanks for your visit and share.

C E Clark from North Texas on August 29, 2015:

Came back to share this article again. The 60s included a lot of change. What a time it was!

I remember the weather man on the only television station we could get out in the country in central Wisconsin saying that it was literally raining all over the world the day of Kennedy's funeral. For some reason that has stuck in my mind all these years. That's pretty unusual if you think about it.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on October 25, 2014:

Hello AngeShearer,

So glad you liked this simple bit of poetry. The times in which it was written were far from simple.

Angie Shearer from Whangarei, Northland on October 25, 2014:

Not a truer word said...first impressions are not always the best I agree....Although short I found this very deep and honest.....great read thanks

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on July 06, 2014:

Hi Sunshine625,

That must have been one memorable day for you the fact that you singled it out as your best memory from high school. The world changed in many ways after the 1960s. Many of the folk songs from those days told some of the story. Of course the history books are now filled with those momentous events and times. Glad you enjoyed this "flashback" hub.

Linda Bilyeu from Orlando, FL on July 05, 2014:

Awesome poem, I have some memories of high school...my favorite memory is graduation day! Even though I was born in 1963 I still remember many of these events because I've read about them. I enjoyed this flashback hub :)

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on January 20, 2014:

Thanks Au fait,

So happy to hear that you enjoyed not only the poem but the history of the era in which it was written. Appreciate the votes and pin.

C E Clark from North Texas on January 15, 2014:

A very interesting review of history and the pictures in the video were interesting (and some were a little weird) too. Your drawing of the golden retriever is superb. You and Shyron are so talented with your amazing drawings!

I love the poem. It's full of wisdom.

I am usually correct in my first appraisal of people, even if all I have is a photo or a voice message. Even so, I like to make allowances for imperfections since I have yet to rid myself of all of my own. Everyone needs a little mercy and forgiveness sometimes.

Really enjoyed this article. Vote up, BAUI, and pinned to my 'Yellow & Orange' board.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on January 12, 2014:

Hi SkySlave, I am so glad to know that you enjoyed this.

Skyler DeCristoforo from Olympia, WA on January 10, 2014:

Great poem and very interesting stories to go along with it. I liked the photos as well.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on December 28, 2013:

Hi Pamela,

Those were tumultuous times with a lot of history being made and groundbreaking events like the moon landing. So glad that you liked this as well as my little poem. The twist was fun, wasn't it! :)

Pamela Dapples from Arizona now on December 22, 2013:

I've really enjoyed reading this hub. Voting way up. I remember twisting to Chubby Checker's music. The Beatles, Bonanza, Perry Como, Leave it to Beaver, Johnny Mathis and the moon landing -- all great memories. Sad memories of watching news casts on CBS about The Vietnam War -- you've really covered a lot in this hub.

And your poem, so true.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on December 22, 2013:

Hi moonlake,

The Cuban Missile crisis was a scary time in our history. Thanks for the share.

moonlake from America on December 22, 2013:

Enjoyed your poem and I do remember the 60's. I was a newly wed military wife at the time of the Cuban Missile Crisis, scary. Voted up and shared.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on June 15, 2013:

Hi Rajan,

I believe you are right. First impressions only take in the outer appearance of a person before one gets to know the real person inside. The latter is what makes each person special and unique. Glad that you also enjoyed this look back in time to the 1960's. Appreciate the votes and share.

Rajan Singh Jolly from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on June 14, 2013:

I love this poem and believe first impressions most of the time are wrong. Interesting reading the events that took place in the 60's. I too remember many of them that occured in my country like the death of our first prime minister in 1964, the advent of beatles on the music scene, man's first landing on the moon and the like.

This was like going back in time.

Voted up and interesting. Shared as well.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on April 09, 2013:

Hi Indian Chef,

I added all the information about some of the many things going on in the 1960's when my brothers and I were in our teenaged years. I thought that it would put the short poem in a bit of perspective. Thanks for coming back and taking another look at it.

Indian Chef from New Delhi India on April 09, 2013:

I saw your poem again but Frankly speaking I dont remember what was in it last time but i remember moon landing was there last time too.. but your hub like always look great.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on April 08, 2013:

Hi Vinaya,

Hope you liked the little poem. I added background information about what was going on in the 1960's. Appreciate your comment.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on April 08, 2013:

Hi Indian Chef,

Glad that you liked the poem. I added some history about the 1960s to make this hub more interesting. Thanks for your votes. Hope you come back for a look.

Vinaya Ghimire from Nepal on April 07, 2013:

Peggy, I don't remember reading your poetry. However, this poem gives me an overwhelming impression.

Indian Chef from New Delhi India on April 06, 2013:

Very beautiful poem, even though it was small but very good. I really liked the pictures you posted here. Voted up , useful and awesome

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on June 25, 2012:

Hi Lucky Cats,

You are kind in your praise of this poem and with all of your votes. I still have that pencil drawing of the golden retriever dog. I donate much of my artwork to worthy causes and have also sold some, but have not parted with that particular drawing yet. He looks a lot like one of our neighbor dogs. Appreciate your comment.

Kathy from The beautiful Napa Valley, California on June 25, 2012:

Peggy, your writing, world view and beautiful artwork are amazing. I applaud these words of wisdom from such a young period in your life....and it has continued on to this day. UP Beautiful Awesome Useful and Interesting.. Love love the doggy face; I could reach out and pet that handsome creature.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on June 25, 2012:

Hi rajan jolly,

Very true...yet often, that is not the case. In an ideal world we would all look beyond first impressions to really get to know people for who they are. Thanks for your comment.

Rajan Singh Jolly from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on June 25, 2012:

How true Peggy! First impressions are not always correct and we shouldn't be judging others based on this.

Beautiful short poem.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on June 14, 2012:

Hi Cathleena,

So very true! It takes a bit of time to get to really know someone. Thanks for your comment.

Cathleena Beams from Tennessee on June 14, 2012:

What a lovely poem about first impressions. They are not usually correct as it takes time to get to know someone. Very well done!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on December 25, 2011:

Hi epigramman,

Thank you for your Christmas greeting and good wishes for the new year ahead. The same is wished for you. We also have 2 cats and my mother's dog keeping us company. One of our cats (Peaches) looks a lot like the one in your avatar photo. Appreciate your comment on this "First Impressions" hub.

epigramman on December 25, 2011:

.....well I can truly see why you are a hub superstar Peggy - such fantastic and beautiful images amongst your hubs and extremely heartfelt and profound words here - please accept my sincere best wishes to you and your family on this Christmas day for me by the lake with my two cats at lake erie time ontario canada 12:11pm and health and happiness to continue for you into the new year of 2012.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on December 08, 2011:

Hi Mark,

Why thank you kindly! Glad you liked my "First Impressions" poem.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on October 29, 2011:

Hello Emma Zimmer,

So glad you liked this "First Impresssion" hub. Will head on over to your site now. Thanks!

Emma Zimmer from USA on October 29, 2011:

pretty, love it.

Emmy Zimmer

ps, check out my hubs if you get a chance

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on August 21, 2011:

Thanks for your comment DRG Da Real Grinc. Appreciate it!

Felix J Hernandez from All over the USA on August 21, 2011:


Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on July 29, 2011:

Hello QudsiaP1,

So true. Often first impressions are not the best. Glad to see your comment here. Thanks!

QudsiaP1 on July 29, 2011:

Oh you have captured this beautifully, the way you have spoken about first impressions; indeed we should not base our lives around them,

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on July 21, 2011:

Hi Kathy,

Glad that you liked this and thanks for the compliments.

Kathy from The beautiful Napa Valley, California on July 21, 2011:

What deep insight for one so young..and the sketch of the Golden Retriever is fantastic! Very very talented writer and artist...good for you! Thank you for sharing this Peggy!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on October 25, 2010:

You are most welcome! Hope more people get to reading your articles as you have so much good, informed and heartfelt advice to give. I just finished reading the one about how Kids are the Best Medicine for Alzheimer's Patients. You are a jewel here on hubpages!

Gail Sobotkin from South Carolina on October 25, 2010:

Thanks Peggy.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on October 25, 2010:

Hello Happyboomernurse,

Thank you for the compliment on this poem about first impressions written so long ago and also the compliments of the pictures from our garden taken at various times of the year. I'm happy to be following you also!

Gail Sobotkin from South Carolina on October 25, 2010:

I really loved this poem which is so profound, yet short and incisive. I also enjoyed reading the background information about it and was amazed that you wrote it in high school! As you said, the sentiments are timeless. As always, your photos are absolutely stunning and bring joy and beauty to the viewer because of their exquisite detail. The shadows and lighting, dew drops and brilliant colors make me feel like I am right there with you in your garden. Kudos my new friend, this was another great hub. I'm so glad I'm following you.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on July 17, 2010:

Hi billyaustindillon,

Thanks for commenting on this poem titled First Impressions. Amazing you even found it as I wrote this hub quite some time ago. Reminds me of my long ago high school days. :-)

billyaustindillon on July 17, 2010:

First impressions certainly has a truthful and positive ring to it. The flower images give beautiful first impressions :)

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 23, 2009:

Hi Kebennett1,

Glad you liked this First Impressions poem. So...you are short AND sweet. Good to know. LOL

Kebennett1 from San Bernardino County, California on September 23, 2009:

Ah, short and sweet, just like me! No, really, I like your poem. It was very intriguing!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on July 18, 2009:

Hello SEM Pro,

Thanks for finding my poem titled "First Impressions" so worthy of your kind mention.

SEM Pro from North America on July 18, 2009:

Oh that we could all find and walk through the doors of wisdom opened for us by enlightened souls - before deciding on the character we choose to form...

Beautiful Peggy - profound. The world would be a much better place if everyone could digest this pearl of wisdom.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on July 12, 2009:

What a great compliment coming from you, Denny. A big thanks!

Denny Lyon from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA on July 12, 2009:

Your talent shined at an early age!  So glad you shared with us too - I just LOVE this simple and perfect poem - keep writing poetry, girl! I just have to blog this on over to my poetry blog for others to enjoy...

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on April 26, 2009:

I agree, Shalini. Thanks for your confirming comment.

Shalini Kagal from India on April 26, 2009:

I'm so glad this was your first hub I read. How right you are - when we get beyond the prejudices, so often it means lifetime relationships we would otherwise have missed!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on April 12, 2009:

Hello holmesjenn,

You've got that right! Nurturing relationships of all kinds pay off big in the end. Thanks for your comment.

holmesjenn from Colorado on April 12, 2009:

Great Poem! I agree as well. Sometimes 2nd and 3rd impressions are not the best either. It may take a 4th impresison. Here is to friendships always growing!


Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on April 12, 2009:

Hello kiran8, It takes a bit longer to really start to know a person... Thanks for your comment.

kiran8 from Mangalore, India on April 11, 2009:

I agree with that ! first impressions are never the best impressions...

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on December 10, 2008:

Thanks for the comment. Everything that is worthwhile takes a little time!

C.S.Alexis from NW Indiana on December 09, 2008:

Glad you memorized this and shared it here. You are so right and it is great to share the positive thoughts. Good news grows slowl and steady. C.S.

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