What’s New on Stewart Avenue?
One summertime Saturday
during the Reagan years,
we smeared dandelions
to determine our butter preferences
after considering the question
“what would you do in a nuclear war?”
Laura and Annie copied Cyndi Lauper off-key,
and Jerry thumped the tetherball
before I beat it back.
Beyond the trees, Bill lumbered behind
a growling manual mower,
releasing the spicy scent
of mutilated grass.
Soon Madge moseyed from her kitchen,
cradling ice pops and Pepsi
for all of us kids.
The Snap-on Tools guy driving past
pressed a hello on his horn,
and, deep in the house,
my mechanical green cuckoo whistled the hour.
Now Laura is saddled with schizophrenia;
Annie strips by the airport, and
Jerry is lost to follow-up.
Bill sought slumber on his sofa and never woke up.
Madge’s memory has morphed into a worsening sieve.
The Snap-on Tools guy placed a pistol against his temple,
and my mechanical green cuckoo
no longer bothers to whistle.
©Adrian Slonaker all rights reserved
Zigzagging back and forth across the Canadian/US border, Adrian Slonaker works as a copywriter and copy editor. Adrian’s work has been nominated for Best of the Net and has appeared in Ariel Chart, Aerodrome, WINK: Writers in the Know and others.