Monday, May 28, 2012

John M. Floyd


The new bartender was a guy
dressed in a well-cut suit and tie.
Sue blinked. "Hey, aren't you Peter Gunn?"
"I used to be, in '61."
"What happened, there? I liked that show."
"The guy who played me had to go."
"So you're Craig Stevens?" she replied.
"No, I'm the character. Craig died."
"The character? For real?" asked Sue.
Gunn shrugged. "Don't I look real to you?"
"But you were once a superstar!"
"A fallen star, now tending bar."
"So all this time, you've been right here?"
"Long story. Want another beer?"
When refilled, Sue inquired again,
"So what all have you done, since then?"
"Well, two producers died one night."
"I heard. They both got poisoned, right?"
"I was accused; I left L.A.
and caught a boat and sailed away."
Sue sipped her brew and asked, "With who?"
"With Gilligan, the Skipper too."
"You hid out on another show?"
"I lived there forty years or so."
"You stayed on, after they were done?"
"An island beach, a naked Gunn."
"So now you're back. Still wanted, right?"
"And undetected, till tonight."
Sue said, with a malicious grin,
"Aren't you afraid I'll turn you in?"
Then gagging, she fell to the floor.
Gunn smiled and said, "Not anymore."

John reads "Tinseltown":

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John confesses: "This poem came from my fond memories of old TV series of the fifties and sixties (The Untouchables, Peter Gunn, 77 Sunset Strip, etc.), and from daydreaming about what might happen if someone bumped into one of those long-lost characters in real life."

Guest editor's ruling: "I like the fallen hero premise of this poem, especially in view of the John Edwards trial, and also the wit and delicious twist of it. I remember the Peter Gunn series. Home with a young child, I watched a lot of TV in those days, and oh, what a classy escape that series was." —Nancy Scott

JOHN M. FLOYD's work has appeared in more than 200 different publications, including The Strand Magazine, Woman's World, Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine, and Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine. A Derringer Award winner and three-time Pushcart Prize nominee, he is also the author of three books: Rainbow's End (2006), Midnight (2008), and Clockwork (2010).


Bobbi A. Chukran, Author said...

I love that one! Thanks for sharing it with us. It caused me to "whoop" at the end, which is rare. LOL. (I was also a fan of Peter Gunn.) bobbi c.

John Floyd said...

Thanks, Bobbi! And thanks to Gerald and Nancy for their interest in this little ditty.


Kathleen A. Ryan said...

Awesome job, John! Your daydreaming led to an terrific piece. Well done :-)

Patricia Harrington said...


This was a fun one! A poem, reminiscent of the olf classic days of the forties and fifties, I think. Nostalgia time and in poetic form. Good going, as usualy, John!!

And I enjoy your Woman's World, have one submitted now . . . suspect the return rejection envelope will be along in the mail. But hope springs eternal.

All the best,

Pat Harrington

Terrie Farley Moran said...

Whoo Hoo!! Excellent job.

John Floyd said...

Thanks, ladies! This kind of thing is always fun to write--but, believe me, I am no threat to Maya Angelou.

Patricia, good luck with Woman's World!

Craig Clarke said...

That was a lot of fun. I was too young to be a fan of the show, but I was named for the actor, so I've always had an affection for Gunn.

Lisbeth Mizula said...

Pure genius!