“I Like Ike”

Poetry by Robert Rubino

I Like Ike

(or A Real Old Person Talking Politics to an Imaginary Much Younger Person)

When I was your age

the subway cost fifteen cents

gas cost thirty-two cents a gallon

television was free

& so was Saturday confession

in preparation for Sunday communion

when I was your age

the Giants & Dodgers played home games in New York

& hockey goalies didn’t hide behind

scary-angry grotesque Marvelesque masks

& neither did elected & selected Republicans

because they were also republicans & reputable too

& the Republican/republican popular president

had been a five-star star

of a real reality show — the definitive blockbuster —

ratings went through the roof

it was called the D-Day invasion

& the bloody siege liberated Europe

from radical right-wing egomaniacal whack jobs.

When I was your age

(now don’t get me wrong we didn’t live in Utopia — no — far from it)

but hockey goalies didn’t wear masks

& elected & selected Republicans (while not exactly woke)

didn’t hide behind an antebellum anti-republic

bloody boorish bullying cult of personality dysfunction.

About the Author

Robert Rubino

Robert Rubino writes poetry, fiction and creative nonfiction. His work has appeared in The Esthetic Apostle, Hippocampus, Cagibi and Elysian Fields Quarterly. For more than thirty years he was a daily editor and weekly columnist at California newspapers. He lives in Palo Alto, California.