That Time of Year
by William Trowbridge
Leave marvel at how light they've grown, discover flight,
learn the barrel roll, the Immelmann. Grizzlies doze
over their morning salmon.
In Algebra I, it's time for the hard stuff already.
Hurricane Darleen and Hurricane Randy try the Swim,
the Tighten-Up, the Mashed Potato.
In the face of thirty-seven straight defeats, the Plattsmouth Eagles
Booster Club decrees a two-story homecoming bonfire,
which spreads through downtown.
The new moon's back at it, trading colors with the pumpkins.
In Halloween XXXII, Michael Meyers thins out another group
of tiresome though basically good kids, slashing every girl
too big for an A cup. Hitler is played by Frankie Avalon.
Rain-soaked patios and lawns just stand around, forlorn
as abandoned pets. A water gun settles under forsythia.
The 700 Club and the NRA lobby for a bill banning Halloween
as a Satanic feminist holiday and allowing gun owners
to shoot trick-or-treaters out after 9 p.m. The President will veto
unless a warning shot's required.
Dark as ever, our lost hour returns from daylight savings time,
tasting like icicles used to.
Inside the Mall of America, now petitioning for statehood,
it might as well be spring.
Opened once more, the steam pipes clank out their ghostly signals.
From The Four Seasons, published by Red Dragonfly Press. Reprinted with permission.