By Jen Schneider
as insignificance walks & waltzes
i used to walk at night only after the weight of the day’s work had lifted now i walk at night because only the sky reminds me that none of that work matters
a ___ reasons to wish upon a star
a billion -- divided by the # of people on earth / life species / unknowns / questions with no answers -- reasons to wish upon a star 1. There are many ways to slice wonder. There are just as many ways to splice & dice bread. Wonder (bread or banter) doesn’t always get better with time (or wine). 2. Pre-packaged “Nights Under the Stars” (with a side of wine – sometimes whines) are often social constructs. 3. Star Light, Star Bright was first recorded in the 19th century. Wishing on stars predated the lyrics & the lights (not the nights). 4. Individuals are believed to have first extended wishes on shooting stars around 127 AD. Ptolemy, a Greek astronomer, pointed to shooting stars as evidence of gods’ curiosity about earth. 5. Curiosity and constellations share more than letters of the English alphabet. Dance and destiny share more than comfort. 6. Jiminy Cricket sang “When You Wish Upon a Star” to Pinocchio as a way to extend and inspire comfort. The first Disney song to win an Oscar & the recipient of the 1940 Academy Award for Best Original Song, “When You Wish Upon a Star” shot up the charts. 7. Charts do more than document observations & track capitalistic rations. 8. Not all that is noted (or notable) is tangible or tracked. Blinks & links linger amidst dust. 9. Gas is more than a state of matter. To gaze is more than a simple act. 10. Stars grace & graze while humans gaze in (in)appropriate ways. 11. Goodnight Moon, written quickly & edited slowly, sold over 48 million copies since first published in 1947. The text is a universal favorite and has been translated into a dozen languages. There are approximately 200 billion trillion stars in the universe. 12. Waltz, walk, and wonder are both nouns and verbs. 13. Dust (& trust) dances in spaces of multiple sizes & scopes. Not all telescopes serve equally (or equitably). There are ___ reasons to wish upon a star.
NYC’s Emergency Management Agency Issues an Allegedly Unprompted and Non-Contextualized 90-second PSA on How to Survive a Nuclear Attack. The Video is Titled ‘Nuclear Preparedness” and Seeks to Assure the Public That There is No Cause for Alarm
i used to think alarms were reserved for emergencies of time, place, & matter now i believe time, place, & matter are both the alarms & the emergencies
of time, place, and/& matter
i used to wonder about the meaning of time and place as well as definitions of words like alarmist & alarming and the context in which an ‘&’ might be preferred to an ‘and’ as topics revolve in rotations that parallel revolutions of earth, moon, & sun and lyrics of Earth, Wind, & Fire now I know that there are few who have mastered the art of assessment & assessing when is a good time to drop news is neither a skill nor a matter of time or place for current threats, times, and greatest hits are rarely as good or as gracious as the mighty elements decibels & dust dance amidst ash of wayward winds
once upon a time
there was a time when we believed in miracles & the benefits both boasted & roasted of one-a-day vitamins a, b, c, & d in wishes upon starlit skies, all constellations named & dandelion fluff, all children at play pursuing innocent games in parachutes that slow motion & cycles of news bounded not by time or place in dawns baked of maple syrup atop short stacks & dusks caked of a day’s sweat & smelly socks when grammar, gripes & grinds inspired not coffins but coffees / wickedly tart & well-worn -- forever sweet now is a time when i wish we still could
Source: the daily news / headlines
on top of a summer hill :: a haibun (half-baked, half-found happiness)
dandelion fluff gathers as wishes and late-night raspberry kisses shimmer amidst hills and neighborhoods simultaneously seasonless and always in season. fields (of dreams) brush shoulders with water towers and backyard courts (of customs and community, all counted). metal hoops mingle with hardwood paddles. cherry blossom bouquets grace sidewalk saddles. balls, bells, and beaks (of ducks & dances at dusk) always on. hearts and hearths of five-digit zip codes melt and mingle. wissahickon trails weave quilts of layers. from halls of independence to institutions of mom-and-pop resurgence. a hummingbird sings. an owl hoots. mister softee tunes travel. from fairmount to kelly to valley green. peddlers, pedestrians, and purveyors drive the germantown mile. frozen treats cool and press (also compress) while novelty-painted trucks tease (also please). good humor push-ups. lemon, cherry, and blueberry ice. sponge bob smiles at batman. choco tacos dance. all motors idle. vanilla and chocolate soft serve blends (sometimes bleeds) in cones of waffles and wafers. hand scooped strawberry and butter brickle. on and of cast iron benches tucked into grassy corners. greens with a hint of poppyseed. grains with a touch of chardonnay. souls on soles trek and travel across brick and bridled paths. stagecrafters marvel. woodmere sculptures and arboretum gardens a(maze). regional rails hug victorian twin and row homes. where downtown meets uptown on a friday night. kilian hardware and hard hats keep locks and labels both hard and soft at bay. low tides at wissahickon and cresheim creeks welcome waders. high tides warm and charm come (what) may. rubber ducks and plastic spoons kiss cranberry scoops and brick front stoops. windows of chocolate eclair pastries and celebratory bakes. residents toast time in inns of mermaids. readers secure limbs (and casual corners) in fairmount park. chestnuts & cherry peppers cool on open pit fires. century-old cobblestones (and freedom) wink. a pair of ospreys chirp from telephone wires parks and patrons sleep
Jen Schneider is an educator who lives, writes, and works in small spaces throughout Pennsylvania.