Every St. Patrick's Day,
Jim “the homeless Leprechaun,”
with fake red beard, green taxi-driver cap,
holding a Howdy Doody puppet to his chest,
cast comical spells on Taylor neighbors.
Early morning, upon rickety back porch,
Jim's found sipping Keystone Light
out of large Philadelphia Phillie cup,
telling all passersby, “It's Guiness Draught!”
A 63-year old nut,
risen out of uncrackable shell,
for fifteen years, Jim drove
“towing and recovery” on the Schuylkill
(“bumper-to-bumper most the time!”)
With ruptured neck disks, at 62,
Jim filed “early” for S.O.S. (the Social kind!),
bloodshot Irish eyes smiling
upon his first monthly 800 smackers.
St. Patrick and Obamacare favored the luck of him,
and come Spring, a new roof warmed Jim over.
Inside crab-grass yard: a colorful kiddie pool,
“Nice as Lake Killarney!” (he would say...)
Jim had talent, and
when below 1% “Blood Alcohol”
local parents would ask him,
during kids birthday bashes,
to don Leprechaun suit, dance a jig,
(and, after, advance him a coupla bucks.)
Not wanting to be a lay-about forever,
Jim day-dreamed his future:
“Maybe Howdy and I'll go bow-tie snappy, wipe
judges windshields at Drive-Thru Car Wash?”
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One November morning, too cold for porch,
Jim sat at kitchen table,
dressed in soiled T-shirt, boxer shorts,
drinking Maxwell House (black), puffing on butt.
Wife Patty ill, he'd try to contact Father Leo later,
“Maybe prayer of petition out-doing Oxycontin?”
He read Scranton Times-Tribune, back page,
an article about ex-Judge Seamus McCaffery's
$11,000.00-a-month public pension,
despite having resigned late October,
linked, in disgrace,
to a pornographic email scandal.
Jim's own monthly pension now water-boarded
by PA American Water bill and others, barefoot
he stood, wobbled, pushed thermostat down to 60.
It's not St. Patricks's Day after all!
Jim apologized to saggy Howdy
for failing to advance their comedy routine
into the the heart of American justice –
“By luck of the Irish, you and me
could have gotten as rich as Judge McCaffery,
if only we knew how to pull the right strings!”