walk down Main Street on a cool April day,
like we’d done mor’n 45 years ago today,
in shuttered windows of stores long ago,
began to open and memories started to flow.
when…” we’d often be sayin’,
relate some moment of teen-aged playin’,
the merchant or cobbler or the five ‘n ten,
the tricks and fun we had back then.
came to Harold Cooley’s Rexall Drug Store,
pressed our noses on the pane of the door,
was dark inside and little we could see,
we peeked into that quaint old pharmacy.
behind us a voice ‘neath the orange Rexall sign,
you fellas like to go inside?” he said quiet and kind,
man, you bet!” we together did say,
the caretaker unlocked that old door of yesterday.
opened the door and beckoned us in,
stepped across the old threshold worn and thin,
to the right we were instinctively drawn,
magazines and cards dusted by years long gone.
browsed in amazement, my how time does fly,
we strolled past memories and dreams did glide,
this special tour we looked all around,
goodness! There’s Lydia Pinkham’s Vegetable Compound.
picked up a card that I dusted and blew,
suddenly – Presto! It was 1962,
the back “hi ya kids,” Harold shouted,
liked Harold and that was not doubted.
that kindly smile, handshake or pat on the back,
made customers his friends, he had that knack,
retired colonel with no obvious military bearing,
to the drug store was always a social fairing.
rounded the aisle to the neighborhood roost,
it was, the soda fountain with delectable sluice,
serving up cherry cokes, banana splits, and shakes,
with butterscotch sundaes and cherry phosphates.
sat on the stools all lined in a row,
our friends this was our afternoon depot,
splurged fifteen cents for a sundae so sweet,
sprang for a quarter for his milkshake treat.
and flirting with the cute soda jerk,
smiled back but was dedicated to her work,
else at the counter enjoying an afternoon pause?
smoke and coffee break was some locals’ cause.
with the sweets that we so eagerly slurped,
slipped off our stools and shamelessly burped,
was it good to visit Cooley’s drug store again,
good-bye, passing the watches, combs, and pens.
opened the door with its familiar sound,
outside with memories abound,
back, why the old store was all dark and quieted,
people, no Harold, just dusty and requited.
a soul good, these trips to yesteryear,
youthful times and people simple and dear,
our minds are free our thoughts can roam,
says you really can’t go back home?