More than once, I've bumped into my neighbor Pat, from across the street, in the greeting card aisle at Jewel.
When it happens, it's usually about 7:30 a.m. on Mother's Day or Valentine's Day, when we're both looking for that perfect greeting card. However, that late in the greeting card cycle, the shelves are three-quarters empty and every card has a couple dozen fingerprints on it. If I can find a card that's not too smudgy, and if I can find an envelope that's about the right size, I grab those suckers and trot to the car happy as a dog who found a bone, even if it set me back $8.95.
Even if I got there a week early, I don't think I'd find a card with enough unique rhymes on it to justify that sticker price. There ought to be more variety. In that spirit, I'm offering a couple of Valentine's cards of my own. Hallmark, feel free to steal.
A Country Card from Your Old, Old Valentine
(Ideally, a Johnny Cash impersonator brings the card to the door, and sings it.)
We've come quite a ways from that first mad crush.
Your hair was long. My belly was leaner.
In my pick-up. In a parking lot. Or the woods, or such.
There were folks at your house and my truck was cleaner.
The years raced by. One big long rush.
A house for the kids, where the grass is greener.
Our neighbors split up and completely lost touch.
She left with the meter man the last we seen her.
You're still sweet, Valentine. It makes me blush.
You used less perfume when my nose was keener.
You overlook those times I forget to flush.
I never would of lasted with a woman who was meaner.
I also think there should be a section in card aisle completely based on movies say, for example, the Godfather trilogy.
To My Wife: A Corleone Valentine's Day
I want to send a message
I know you won't forget.
No fish wrapped up in paper.
No bleeding horse's head.
No bullets in our bedroom.
No car blown up in shreds.
Just Valentine's sweet wishes
and no one winds up dead.
Maybe things aren't always perfect.
My friends are rough and crude.
But I'm wrapped up in family business,
and I have to keep them close.
So show them some respect
and try not to be so rude.
And know that in my heart:
It's you I love the most.
One day we'll move away
to a place that's safe and clean.
We'll live like Ozzie and Harriet,
with Tupperware and lids.
Our family will be as normal
as anyone's ever seen.
But if by chance that don't work out,
don't try to take my kids.
I don't know. Maybe these need to be a little more sentimental. You probably have much better ideas. If you do, feel free to add your Valentine's poetry below in the comments section. But, like the engine block on a vintage Mustang, be sure to keep it clean.