Did you know
that every sand dollar
that you find on the beach
has a poem inside of it?
When you first
pick up a sand dollar
from the sea shore,
sand will fall out from
two holes on its underside,
one larger hole in the center
and one smaller hole off to
the side near the edge.
Each grain of sand that falls
from those two holes are the
unused words to the poem.
The grains that remain inside are
the words that make up the poem.
Every time you shake the sand dollar
a little more sand falls from those
two holes changing the poem inside
a little bit, but no matter how many
times you shake it and no matter
how many grains of sand fall out
of that sand dollar, the last line
of the poem will always say
I love you.
“Winter wheat” my uncle Carl responded
to my question, as he drove past the frigid
frosty field being worked and sown on this
suddenly sunless hands gloved, breathe
snorting, ear muffed tractoring morning.
“They plant it in the Fall”, he explained,
“The seeds can survive the cold and
germinate under the winter snow, then
the wheat sprouts when spring comes”.
I wish I could do that... survive the winter
cold until spring, I thought somewhat
sardonically to myself remembering how
physical last winter was with 105 inches of
young people’s snow as we drove on toward
my cousin’s wedding up at Keuka Lake.
I thought that wheat must be one of those
new fangled genetically modified kinds of
wheat with some sort of teeny tiny Silicon
Valley digital micro clock embedded inside the
DNA of each and every last seed. How else would
each wheat seed know when it was March 20th?
Then I wondered how today’s marriage would
last through its first winter and would there be
any new sprouts announced when that winter
wheat says that spring has arrived. That would be
lovely I mused. My uncle, AKA father of the bride,
hadn’t excepted any such notion... as his new
studded tires growled on toward Keuke Lake.
When I look through
the pitted windshield
over the dented
and rusty hood,
I still feel that
just as I did when
I was seventeen.
I still see all of
what drives me.
It all looks so
beautifully the same.
It’s only when I mash
the old gas pedal that
I begin to feel the pain.
(or the 1st day of the worst hangover you will ever know)
Woke up this morning
As did the entire world
A mind crushing nightmare
Lingers like septic lead
Hillary Clinton lost
Donald Trump won
Hateful name calling reality show
Becomes stone cold reality
An American embarrassment
How is it possible
This divisive, dreadful man
Is now our new president?
I pray my fears
And my worst expectations
Will never be met
Tell me, tell us all
Of some silver lining
Anything to break our fall
Buckle up citizens
No matter your side
I am afraid
It is going to be
A rough and scary ride
© Edward Ferri, Jr.
Biography: Edward Ferri, Jr. grew up on a "non profit" farm on the dry side of the Santa Cruz Mountains where "Bailing wire, gumption, and spit" were the "apps" of the day. He is a graduate of SJSU has been published in Eskimo Pie, Lucidity, Muddy River Poetry Review, Still Crazy and Agave Literary Magazines. Also forthcoming in Main Street Rag. He first realized the beauty of Denali in the rear view mirror of a gutless gutted Volvo 544. He was leaving to meet Carol and never returned.