Ice Cream Boy

Ice Cream Boy

it tasted good
but especially 
it felt really good
on hot summer days
whenever momma
would give me 
ice cream

it tasted good
of course
but it felt
even better
knowing
her ice cream
was for me
and no other kids
because
she loved me
like she loved
no other kids

it felt so good
back then
and still does now
whenever i can get it
from whoever i can convince
i deserve 
a summertime treat

but it don't come around much
anymore
since most folks nowadays
aren't nearly
as lovely and sweet
as my momma
was

ice cream
just don't come around much
not so free and easy
like from momma
since it don't feel
nearly as good
to give somebody else
ice cream
as it felt
for somebody else
to always want
to give it
to me

being so hard
to come by now
being so scarce
then tell me why 
i shouldn't scheme
beguile and coerce
to try to get
as much ice cream
for myself
as i can

and why'd i wanna hand over
something that feels
so goddamned good?
why'd i hand it over
to somebody else
who hasn't worked
nearly as hard  
as me
scheming
beguiling
and coercing
to get
what little bit of ice cream
i got?

i ain't giving it up
not a spoonful
and i ain't
handing none over
cause i had to work
ten times as hard
to get mine
than all the rest
of you
who simply
give and take
which don't feel
nearly as good
as being so loved
as to only have
to receive

i remember the time now
as a kid
it was summertime and hot
and aunt bernice was visiting
i asked momma for some ice cream
she said there wasn't any
and she didn't have the time
for getting me any
since aunt bernice was there
visiting

i started to whimper
so momma gave me a nickel
to go to the stand
for a cone
so i took the nickel
and threw it across the room
cause i didn't wanna miss
the cartoons on cowboy bob
and didn't wanna walk down 
to the dairy cottage
in the heat

so i started to cry
telling her 
a better mother
would get me
the ice cream i wanted
then and now
especially since
i was small
i got picked on
and i didn't have
a father

in the other room
i heard
aunt bernice say
i shouldn't be allowed to act
that way
or to talk
to my mother like that
she said little boys
big enough to earn their ice cream
ought to be ashamed of crying
ought to go out and earn it
and get it
instead of crying at their poor mother
for what they wanted

i heard momma say
she felt sorry for me
for being small
and fatherless
and i remember
after that
both me and mommma
never thinking
about aunt bernice
the same way again

nowadays
it isn't the same
it's a lot harder
getting my ice cream
than it was from mommma

nowadays
i gotta work
a lot harder
and don't bother telling me
the treat i get now
isn't given
out of love
that's it given
sometimes
even much of the time
just to shut me up

don't tell me that
cause i don't wanna care
what real love is
and i won't care
what real love is
so long as
we all keep pretending
love's nothing more
than the gift
of ice cream

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