April is National Poetry Month! So here’s one of my earlier pieces to celebrate the power of the Word.
Words jingle in my ears like pennies in the pocket of my navy wool pea coat. When I was ten, one word would buy a licorice whip red or black or a thick block of Bazooka bubble gum complete with color comic strip. You could blow bubbles from 2:30 till dinner time round and pink like Valentine hearts. One word could be peeled and sliced like an apple so the brown tear-shaped seeds slid off the knife and into your hand. One word was succinct enough to serve as an honest medium of exchange, a token of affection. Now talk is cheap. Scatter words on the sidewalk; no one even bothers to pick them up. Still I save words. I drop them into big glass jugs hide them in the ash tray of my car sort them by year roll them in brown paper bury them in the back of my lingerie drawer. They are orange like the moon or marigolds. I string them together: they become a coral necklace or amber rosary beads. I toss them before me like a hopeful ten-year-old in the midway throwing sweaty coins at crystal candy dishes and fluted cake plates but the words hit the cold glass and bounce right off. Catch one. Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash