Ready, Aim, Sing
My sister, Angie, thought
she’d save the world.
She grew her black hair long
and fancied herself
the next Joan Baez.
Angie was sure song
would silence the guns.
Never shy, she belted out
a steady stream
of Paxton, Prine and Collins.
It made dad smile to hear
though he couldn’t fathom the lyrics.
He tried to save the world once,
humping an M1 across France and Germany.
I used to make her crazy—
isn’t that what brothers are for,
with a refrain from Lehrer’s spoof—
Folk Song Army.
You must know it—
At sweet 16, my sister played
the pass-the-hat dives
on Bleeker Street
and protest culture collided.
Sure, she would save the world,
but wasn’t it easier if you were high?
She hit the road at 17–
four wannabes in an old Nash Rambler
heading for the summer of love.
They never made it to Haight-Ashbury—
burned so much oil crossing Kansas
it looked like they had chosen the Pope.
Dad drove out to get them—
the car tomb-silent all the way home.
I have her old Gibson 12
and pluck out a Paxton now and again.
My sister, Angie, married money—
she lives in Dallas and voted for both Bushes
while her grandson, Dylan, vows to save the world.