by Jim Farfaglia
Remembering Card Games
They brightened many a boring evening:
someone would pull out a deck,
explain the rules and, after a few hands,
friendships would be melded.
A good shuffler made a big impression:
the most talented ones
were also the most envied –
they could make a deck just sing out.
You could tell a card shark by how he dealt:
cards sailing across the table,
never sliding off onto the floor –
stopping right in front of each player.
You had a choice how to hold your cards:
like a geisha, waving her fan,
like a stairway, one atop the other,
like a true gambler, close to his heart.
Those games taught us a lot about life:
good winners never bragged,
poor sports threw their cards,
and nobody wanted to sit next to a cheater.
And who could forget the feel of a new deck:
each of those fifty-two, crisp and clean,
everyone in the circle already certain
of the good luck coming their way.