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April third poems


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Day 2 berkeley maps


growing up in Berkeley

back in the day

we still were allowed 

to free roam 


and so I went 

everywhere on foot

or bus


walking to Solano avenue

drinking coffee

at Peets coffee

eating Chinese food

in Berkeley’s china town


walking downtown

walking to CAL

eating top dog


experiencing the late 60’s

transforming Telegraph


and walking in the woods

in tilden park

high up in the hills

overlooking the bay area







Day three Recalling people I barely knew


over the years

I have known so many people

and now when the virus 

is spreading out around the world


I will soon be hearing

that this person has died

and that person has died


I will outlive many of my friends

from around the world

part of getting old 

something that I fear


one day perhaps

people will hear

that jake has died

and they will say


that they barely knew me

and wished that they had

taken the time

to become my friend


Just as I think 

about all the friends

i am about to loose

to this killer virus

running amuck



corona fears


the word fills us with dread

spreading around the world today 

will we all survive this


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Ha Jake,  I grew up in El Cerrito, your neighbor and high school rival.  My first job while I was in high school was at JC Penney's which I believe was on Solano Ave in Berkeley.  I knew downtown well and of course the UC campus, I didn't attend there but when in high school I dated a UC student.  We once went with his frat brothers and their dates to the Chinese New Year celebration in San Francisco, then snuck into the then closed down, ruins of the Palace of Fine Arts through a hole in the chain link fence and wandered through the grounds by moonlight (so beautiful), then back to the frat house to climb through the basement window and fixed breakfast there.  I remember hearing the Campanile bonging and realizing I was out long past curfew, then the scramble to get home.  When I got there, my mom had already left to take my brother out for his Sunday morning paper route so I knew I was in big trouble.  But it was worth it.  It was probably the most fun date I've ever been on full of noise, exotic food, culture, adventure and laughter.  A night to remember, the boy not so much, but we had fun together and he did take me on some fun dates. 


~~ © ~~ Poems by Judi Van Gorder ~~

For permission to use this work you can write to Tinker1111@icloud.com

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Hey that's my favorite Pete's and technically Albany - Questionable Border between El Cerrito and Beserkley.


Yes as I've said to my wife, if we're lucky will bury allot of friends if not they'll bury us:-) Nice reflections on our current state of plague YoP (Year of Plague)

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You three have me California dreaming, though I've never been. But in that era, I wouldn't have been riding the bus. I would be in a muscle car or at least a Cadi Coupe de Ville.

Tony 🙂

Here is a link to an index of my works on this site: tonyv's Member Archive topic

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