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Three Rooms

THREE ROOMS AND A PATH

In Nashville, every family boasts
Of five rooms and a bath.
But in my youth I never had
But three rooms and a path.

They built the outhouse on the brink
Of Tumblin Creek, and then
Each time I passed I had an urge
To push the outhouse in.

For weeks I fought this powerful urge,
And one day I was weak
I slipped out to the outhouse and
I pushed it in the creek.

That night my Dad called me aside
And all he had to say
Was "Do you know who pushed the house
Into the creek today?"

I told my Dad that it was I
He didnít even chide
But then and there with a leather belt
Prepared to tan my hide.

"But Daddy" I said, "George Washington
Cut down the cherry tree
He told the truth and so his Pa
Let little George go free".

"But let me ask you something son"
My Dad said with a frown
"Was his Pa in the cherry tree
When George cut it down?"

Pek Gunn
Tennessee State Poet Laureate