Musings, Anecdotes & Insights

The wise teacher leads you to the threshold of your own mind (Kahlil Gibran, The Prophet)

Unbeknownst to me at the time, the verse that follows was destined to give rise to my novel The Defendant: Insights & Motivation for the Salesperson (in everyone), which is currently available as an ebook. I say 'unbeknownst to me' in the sense that the original version of this poem marked the first time I put on paper my belief that life is all about 'selling', whether or not we realize it. There is always some sort of negotiation taking place between people, whether on a personal level or as representatives of a larger entity—a daily sales pitch, if you like. Hence, The Defendant explores motivational themes and insights, with a particular slant towards readers in the Selling Professions.

Life's A Pitch
© 1992 by Dominic Spano

He began as a cell determined to sell,
To meet his desires each day.
But he quickly discerned, 'fore nine months had turned,
He'd be selling each step of the way.
Right there in the womb, there wasn't much room,
And his head got reversed with his feet.
But negotiation plus determination
Lead a breech to consider retreat.

In the Maternity Ward, they severed the chord
And with it his tie to his mum;
Then a slap on the rear, which reduced him to tears,
Prepared him for what was to come.
You dirty rat, I'll get you for that,
He vowed when he started to wail;
But mom took a stand and reached out her hand,
And, voilà, he had made his first sale.

Life goads and it baits, it necessitates
Strong will, some guts and some zeal.
Or else, it was obvious, he'd remain anonymous,
Though endowed with brains and appeal.
For him to achieve, he needed to weave
A plan that was aimed at success
By metamorphosing or quickly disposing
Each 'no' to a resounding 'yes'.

As a toddler in school, so calm and so cool,
He'd sell a thought here, a want there;
And both teachers and students, they saw the emergence
Of a salesperson extraordinaire.
The youth grew secure, with plenty allure,
Each sizzle with fanfare he sold.
Unmoved and undaunted, his talents he flaunted,
To each Tom, each Dick, and each Harold.

The spring turned to fall, the youngster grew tall,
And he fervently took up his place
In a world vast and cruel and with scarcely a rule,
It would show him no mercy or grace.
His will interceded, he always succeeded
To cold-call right down to the wire.
What I need, he reasoned, is to become seasoned
And to sell like a fast gun for hire.

Then early one morning, without any warning,
The pangs of first love came a–prowlin'
It was unrequited but, being far sighted,
By no means would he throw the towel in.
He courted and courted but never aborted
His longing for closing the deal.
He brought her some roses and used trial closes
To measure his state of appeal.
He hotly pursued it and before he knew it,
She witnessed the charm of his ways;
The charm of a closer who'd never oppose her—
A salesman whom she couldn't faze.

The tempus did fugit, he chased and pursued it,
With fervor and joy and with grace,
Which brought him success, and much happiness,
And he spread it all over the place.
Folks appreciated and regurgitated
How grateful they were for his skill.
They assured him with glee that he'd never be
A salesman that's over the hill.

The day finally came, Reaper called out his name
And the salesman said "surely you jest.
For my destiny is determined by me
And not by some unwelcomed guest.
I'll make you a pact", said the salesman with tact,
"It's a basic tenet of science.
You can come after me, the day that you see
That I've finally run out of clients."
Said the Reaper, "okay." What else could he say?
His visit has one basic glitch.
He cannot compete, he's forced to retreat,
From a vastly superior sales pitch.


The initial few chapters of The Defendant build to a storyline that incorporates a 'play' (via a night at the theatre) to reflect back to Julius, the protagonist of the story, his views, hang–ups, shortcomings, cruel realities as well as his admirable qualities and successes so that he can more objectively evaluate his performance in the selling arena. As in the verse above, many of the themes are summarized by way of rhymes incorporated into the dialogue of the play. If you enjoy the undertones in the preceding verse, then you will likely appreciate the manner in which The Defendant allows you to uncover the roles played (in both our personal and professional lives) by personality (e.g. dominant vs. submissive), self–esteem, self–respect, conscience, issues of control, upbringing, acculturation, ambivalence, altruism, etc. The Defendant can be previewed at Amazon and at Smashwords.



Sheriff Dee (Poem)

Ballad of Pegleg Bart (Poem)

My Mother, America (Poem)

The Salesperson (Poem)

The Hockey Player (Poem)

Queens Of Hockey (Poem)

Some Call It GOLF (Poem)

Accordion Instruction

Child At Heart

Glorious Mystery

In the Twilight of the Moon

Pathways to Sold!

Mystery at Pirate Cove