johnmac's rants

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Speaking of Teddy .. and Inwood

From the Facebook "Faces of Poetry" Group:

Teddy Could Drink In Inwood
By johnmac

Ted Kennedy was rich
Ted Kennedy was a United States Senator
Ted Kennedy made great personal mistakes
Ted Kennedy was known for his drinking
and, in the end, little of this mattered.

Ted Kennedy’s Memorial and Funeral
dwelt little on some of these points
(and not-at-all on the rest)
because these were not the essence
of Ted Kennedy.

What people focused on was
what Ted Kennedy did for others.
He called everyone in Massachusetts
… who have family that died on “9/11”
… who had family that died in Iraq and Afghanistan
He got Joe Biden through the tragic loss of his wife
He took all of the Kennedy children
as his own personal responsibility
… and the stories went on and on,
each portraying Edward Moore Kennedy
as a “stand-up guy”

A “stand-up guy” is an expression
from the old neighborhood,
Inwood, Manhattan, New York City;
One of the highest compliments
that could be paid.

A “stand-up guy” instinctively
“did the right thing”; a “stand-up guy”
knew what “the right thing” was.
The right thing for Teddy was:
... sitting with Joe Biden when his wife died;
… coming to hear Chris Dodd give a difficult eulogy;
… keeping JFK Jr.’s body company on the recovery boat;
… calling Joe Scarborough to offer help in a family crisis;
… stepping in as the Patriarch of the family after the assignations;
… getting his cancer savaged son to walk up a hill to sled down again;
… making the awful calls to commiserate with families of dead heroes
… and so much more with so many!
(unsaid is the memory of him once not doing the right thing).

Teddy was a stand-up guy and
he would have been welcome in an Inwood Bar!

Copyright 2009 John F. McMullen


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