Showing posts with label 80's. Show all posts
Showing posts with label 80's. Show all posts

Wednesday, July 3, 2024

July 4, 1989


What I remember

about the Fourth of July, 1989.


The jar of cocktail sauce

bouncing out onto the floor

when I opened the refrigerator door.


It landed near my feet,

glass shattering,

a small slice appearing

atop my left foot.


It bled little,

but left a scar.


Our neighborhood was raucous.

My mom’s friend from work

came to stay with us

with her two-year-old girl,

a beautiful duo of color

with wide, bright smiles.


While walking the block of partiers,

some teens yelled racial epithets

and later egged our house.

Those kids are probably

doing time now somewhere

for the long haul.


Walking back across the parking lot

from the store, just the two of us

in our cute pink and green shorts,

some men leered, catcalling us

as we neared the car.


I didn’t notice them,

I was a teen

in a daydream,

but mama of color

whisked me back

with a flash.


I’m often still in daydreams,

ask anyone I know,

but what I remember

about the Fourth of July, 1989,


bled little

but left a scar.



© 2024 Jennifer Wagner

Monday, July 1, 2024

I Wrote an Essay on Suicide (in Tenth Grade)


That blue guitar I had

when I was young

is gone now,

frets and strings

pulled back to another time.


I remember the burning

on my fingertips,

the busyness of learning

to put the tune all together,


and a yearning

to scale

from basement

to window



I don’t know,



I wanted to send a message

from hidden hours

I’d spent writing and sketching

figures of love and loneliness

draped across my waterbed.


Oceans have passed

since then

and the message

remains much the same.


Hello. I am.  And so are you. I see you,

lily among the cranberries

in a burning coffin.

Jump, but into a place

where snow and rain are soft.


The tune plays softly still,

lighting matches for hope’s candle.


Grasp it with me, together.

We’ll need the light,

and we’ve got many miles to go

before we sleep.



© 2024 Jennifer Wagner


Shay’s Word Garden Word List


The close is a twist on the close of Robert Frost’s poem.  Yes, I had a waterbed and a blue guitar in the 80’s. 


Saturday, January 12, 2013

Jukebox (Boombox), Baby

Joan Jett on cassette
softball summers
of field-dirt-crusted scabs
on my knees
and thighs
sliding into second
my dad said I never did it quite right
because there should be more on my thighs
if I were

a cherry Tootsie Roll Pop
with a ‘tude
sneaking gin and Jack Daniels
and smokes
dreaming of VW Super Beetles with glitter in the paint
or a ‘64 convertible Mustang, cherry red too, of course—
and The Outsiders

in audible
relief, mom and dad,
I didn’t turn out wielding
a six-string and blowing sugar pops
but still I do
Love Rock ‘n Roll

Copyright 2013 Jennifer Wagner

At dVerse Poets Pub master prompter and poet Stuart McPherson has us writing about 'Growing Up'