Poems of a life. A Puzzlement by Hal O’Leary

Poems of a life. A Puzzlement by Hal O’Leary

Poems of a life by Hal O’Leary: A Puzzlement, On Aging, Be Nice, Rain, and On Graduation. Enjoy the day and every minute because, in fact, life is a puzzlement!

Poems of a life. A Puzzlement by Hal O'Leary

Magellan’s Victoria. First expedition that circumnavigated the globe in 1519-22.

A Puzzlement

I need for someone to expound

On this, a question quite profound.

I’d like someone to please propound

A thought that won’t prove too unsound.

It is a question to confound

The very brightest mind around.

Perplexities I fear resound.

Impossibilities abound.

My mind’s at sea and not aground.

If, as they state and it be sound,

Four corners on an earth that’s round.

Pray tell, just where might they be found?


On Aging

On turning sixteen, it’s that and a half,

In trying their best, to hold in the gaffe,

It’s said with a scowl, and never a laugh.


But at the four-o, it’s just thirty-nine.

The only thing ageing then is the wine.

It’s nicely uttered in voice quite benign.


At eighty it’s that and one more almost.

On taking the stage and making a toast.

With eyes all a glow, it said with a boast.


Be Nice

The following advice will well suffice

To give your life a healthy slice of spice.

With all the friends you might hope to entice.

It’s priceless, and there is no sacrifice.

It’s simple if you’ll just use this device.

To everyone you meet, say something nice.



Just let me say, and say again,

Of all the things I most disdain,

I’d have to say, It’ bloody rain.

Although it may fall there in Spain,

Admittedly upon the plain,

According to Shaw’s speech refrain,

I fear that here in my domain

It falls upon my window pane,

Which does for me become a bane.

It means, of course, I must remain

Confined within in abject pain.

I know that one should not complain,

But please allow me to explain.

If I am locked up in the main,

With no one but myself to blame, it’s plain

I might just find myself insane.

So let me say, and say again,

Of all the things I most disdain,

I’d have to say, it’s bloody rain


On Graduation

On this your day you will receive

advice from everyone you know.

There’s little of it you’ll retain

And really there’s no reason why you should,

for what you will most likely get

are all the things that brought success to them,

as though your life should be a mirror of their own.


But who knows what your life will be,

what opportunities you’ll find,

what trials you may encounter.

Just be prepared for all that comes your way,

And toward that end take heed of this,

In opting twixt the head and heart,

I’d choose the heart for happiness.

And for success, you need no more than this.

Keep all options open

for as long as well you can.

Poems of a life by Hal O’Leary

View Comments (2)
  • always a pleasure to read you, sir…

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Hal O’Leary is an eighty-seven-year-old Secular Humanist who believes that it is only through the arts that one is afforded an occasional glimpse into the otherwise incomprehensible. He has been awarded an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree from West Liberty University.

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