On a dusty August night in 1974 a rebel rode into the Town of Rosendale in Ulster County, New York on his 750 chopped Honda the chrome was polished and the sissy bar gleaming,
as he parked in front of The Well, where he met Billie Ghoulie, the unofficial mayor who
owned and bartended there. Billie was freakish in his top hat, black cape, and skin tight jeans
but had found his niche and calling. Billie also owned the Astoria, the only hotel in town. The Well had a good reputation and you could find well-known bands like Three Dog Night jamming to “Jeremiah was a Bullfrog” on a Saturday night.
That first night he met and befriended a man named Dirty John and his wife Sue.
Dirty John’s Everything Shop housed both him and that Honda for the next few months
as he quickly made his way through the local town
produce, squeezing and partaking of all the fresh melons
passing on the Astoria—full up for the Labor Day holiday.
Of course, she didn’t know that yet, a good girl, Cheryl was barely out of high school.
Sue had whispered about him
the way he shined like a new copper penny.
He had called her pretty lady, that first night they met
fresh from a hot bath, he didn’t know
he had swept her away
smelling that way.
Not until much later did he recall
that he had stolen
the Rose out of Rosendale.