a poetry e-zine










Poems By Mary McCall
The Bridge to Nowhere

The dirt road loves
visitors with vehicles.
Its potholes open hungrily
for unsuspecting tires.

Ten years ago,
you could toss
crab cages off the side
of the wooden bridge,
watching them sink

into the green-brown
waters. Plopping
down by the edge,
your legs dangling over
the warm boards,
you could feel your toes
kissing the bay.

Today, the same
planks and pylons
have been charred
into blackened splinters
where flames instead of feet
warmed the wood.

Those carrying cages
or fishing poles do not
linger here anymore.

Instead, artists who dabble
in spray paint have a canvas
in the concrete barriers
blocking off the bridge,

and glass shards
from broken beer bottles
glint in a pattern
of dark browns and greens.

Now deprived of a destination,
the bridge lacks
a belly:
the forgotten middle
within its abrupt end.

The remains desire only
to be whole,
the two halves,
straining forward,

The Photo Album

Sitting here, I smile to myself,
watching the girls pass by my fingertips.

She looks like Pebbles with her tuft
of hair twisted into a pink bow. Her lips
are the color of watermelon—
just a shade lighter than the onesie
that hugs the rolls of fat,
which jiggle when she laughs.

Arms poised for attack, her lips curling
over plastic fangs, the Bride of Dracula
has arrived—if only for Halloween.
Her black wedding gown: a leotard top
lined with sequins, opening into a gown
of heavy lace, fanning out as she twirls.

She huddles with her friends
behind the bleachers, showing off
her mortarboard with an Irish flag
her grandmother has painted on
in acrylics. Don’t wear those
on the stage, her mother warns,
pointing to her sunglasses.

Looking at these girls, I know
that they are parts of myself,
shining brightly once, then tucked
away like souvenirs into my memory.

I haven’t met the next me yet,
but I know she hates seafood
and prefers green mint chocolate chip
ice cream. For now, she’s off to the side,
waiting her turn in the wings while I step
into the center, smiling.

Mary McCall is currently a junior at Fairfield University, majoring in English with a concentration in creative writing. She also helped to establish The Cream Filling Literary Magazine on campus of which she is co-editor. Her own work has appeared in Teen Ink.

Copyright 2008  Chantarelle's Notebook