Wednesday, March 16, 2011

THE DUKE


NOTE: A good friend of mine, Kansas City film critic MARIE ASNER, wrote the following poem about JOHN WAYNE in the 1990's. The poem is now on display at the John Wayne Birthplace-Museum in Winterset, Iowa. Enjoy.
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THE DUKE
By Marie Asner

Head slowly lowers to blue flannel chest
with chipped buttons and coffee stain.
Stage hands quietly drift past
not touching elbow or boot.
Soft snore fills the air
for those privileged to sit nearby.

Lunch time for the crew,
but the Duke is dreaming
of a green actor with chance
to ride the stagecoach,
fight back leather outlaws
and softly say, "ma'am,"
to feminine hearts around the world.

He stirs and the dream shifts---
his bones were stiff but one last ride
with reins in mouth and two guns blazing
to capture villains with true grit,
and show the world he was still royalty.

The script girl gently clears her throat
and he wakes, rising to full height.
"Let's go, pilgrims."
Cast gathers for another take
as swirls of dust lightly brush hand-tooled boots
and the leading lady's heart flutters.
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Duke Wayne narrates America, Why I Love Herhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yQM1oLnMLNU

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