To a Gal in California

Surfer Girl trying to stand

Image by San Diego Shooter via Flickr

like a thirsty man wandering lost at noon
alone in the empty arid Mojave Desert land
longing for a drink, I long to hold your hand

like the snow white covered Rocky Mountains
proudly reaching to the sky
I stand tall and hope to catch your eye

like the tossed and churning blue Pacific ocean
I’m riding high surfing on emotion
and longing for your devotion

like a scenic Yosemite waterfall in the distance
with water seemingly endlessly crashing down
I’m swept away when you’re around

and like the California sun
you are the only one

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  1. #1 by RKHouse on February 4, 2012 - 8:28 am

    I wrote this in 1986 after returning to Tennessee after working for two years in California. Not sure who I was thinking of when I wrote it. I tried to improve the original, but I’m not sure I succeeded. What do you think? Perhaps it doesn’t matter. I just wish I could remember why I wrote it. I can only assume there’s some forgotten unrequited love of mine from that period. Here’s the original version:

    like the dryness of this land
    a thirsty man
    I long to hold your hand.

    like the hard white mountain rock
    daring to reach the sky
    I hope to catch your eye

    like the tossed and churning blue ocean
    my emotions
    long for your devotion

    like a rushing waterfall falling down
    I’m swept away
    when you’re around

    and like the California sun
    your are the only one

  2. #2 by RKHouse on February 5, 2012 - 10:08 am

    Going through my poems just now, I discovered another version of this poem. Perhaps this was the original and the other version was my attempt to strip it down to a cleaner form. I can’t be sure since neither version was dated. Instead of the title “To a Gal in California”, this version was titled “To California”. If nothing else this just confirms that I was never happy with the original, whichever one that was. All that work for a girl I can’t remember. Only to end up with three versions of a poem that I’m still not totally happy with.

    To California

    like the arid dryness of this land
    a thirsty man
    I long to hold her hand

    like the hard-white mountain rock
    daring to reach the sky
    I hope to catch her darling eye

    like the tossed waters
    of the churning blue ocean
    are my emotions
    longing for her devotions

    like the rushing majestic sweep
    of a waterfall falling down
    I’m swept under and away
    when she’s around

    like the happy twinkling stars
    of a moonlit summer night
    just her simple smile
    sends me on a high flight

    and like the California sun
    she is the only one
    for me

    to California, to her

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