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Frederick D. Hollis, Jr.

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Poems by Frederick
Big Bend Poets chapter, Tallahassee FL
Florida State Poets Association



A Musical Ode

Inspired by and dedicated to my son
Fred Hollis, Wakulla County FL
I know not a note of music—
Not one note of music know I.
Still I thrill, to the beat of the tom-tom
and the cry of a loon, in the fading sky.
What is this thing we call music,
that causes out hearts to skip—
as we swing and sway to its rhythms
with nary a fall or trip?


Who is to say what is music?
Who can define its place?
Yet we know we'd be lost without it
in a world without joy, or grace.
So let us give thanks for composers,
for the fiddle, the drum and the fife,
for musicians who skillfully play them,
and conductors who give them life.


Adieu to Christopher

Here's to our friend Christopher,
AKA Topher, or Chris,
who's planning to leave, and
whose absence we'll grieve,
though we're glad that the
world is his oister.

We rejoice in his verve,
as well as his nerve,
and feel sure he's
made a good choister.


Tough Love

Here's to our Ms. Bruce—
authority figure supreme—
who has paid her dues
and knows all the moves,
when it comes to keeping
kids on the beam.

To be in her class is a joy—
a learning experience,
and that's no ploy.
Her style is succint, her
technique to the point:
"you've come here to
LEARN in THIS joint"



Nine/Eleven Revisited

Inspired by and dedicated to
my daughter Florence Hollis
and to free women everywhere.
Goodnight Osama, wherever you are.
How could you hate us so much -
we, who are haunted by the beautiful
poetry of Kahlil Gibran - of Omar and
his Rubaiyat, of Abou Ben Adhem,
and his "deep dream of peace"?
Is it because of the oil, the money,
or perhaps the women?

Yes, we do sit on your oil for a time,
and the money IS compelling. But then
you have plenty of oil, and do not want
for money. "Cherchez la femme"!
Is it better to keep everything
"under wraps" with the burnoose,
or "let it all hang out' a la bikini?
There must be a happy medium.

Women - our women, even - came by
their freedom the hard way. They won't
give it up easily, and they want it to be
UNIVERSAL - even where YOU sleep,
eat, and live, Osama. Does this give
you cause to hate us, this desire for
freedom for everyone - even for
YOUR daughters and granddaughters?

NOBODY'S PERFETC, Osama, neither
you nor I, nor our "MINIONS OF GOD"
(our preachers, priests, rabbis) - nor
your mullahs, (nor even my spelling).
     Perfection is for the Almighty.



Frederick D. Hollis, Jr.

People climbing books
"You've come here to learn in this joint."

FREDERICK was born on April 13, 1914, in Dothan AL, where he completed 1st grade before moving with his family to Georgia. He grew up in Pelham, attending school there and in Thomasville before graduating from McCallie School, Chattanooga TN. He attended the University of Alabama and the University of Georgia, and served in the Air Force in WWII. He married Emily Brim of Pelham, who passed away in 1992; they have two children: Fred III, locally retired teacher, and daughter Florence, who lives in Virginia. He has worked in various capacities—as employee, manager and owner—in groceries, insurance, and motels, and served in the US Forest Service. For the past eight years he has represented Elder Care Services as a Foster Grandparent in the Leon County School District, having been nominated several times as Education Volunteer of the Year, which award he won in 2002. He also has received the Literacy Award of the Leon County Reading Council (2005-6) for "outstanding contributions to literacy," and has received recognition at Oakridge School in the form of local CBS and ABC video interviews while working with his teacher, Sally Feehrer. Fred finds working with disadvantaged children very rewarding, as he does working in the school environment with great teachers and administrators. His poems appear under the pen name FREDERICK.

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Created 071018
Updated 090730