9:45 pm, now dark.

The bar b que over, we carry our folding chairs
down the street, seat ourselves among our neighbors to talk,
drink alcohol and laugh until the fireworks start.
The nearby country club’s annual production unfolding.

Fireflies clocking in as the un-paid overture of this July 4th
A starburst above us confirming the start of the show, the explosions,
getting everyone’s attention.
Many colors visible, yellows from sodium, reds, blue, and green from the
other materials all adding to this introduction.

When our children were small they’d get into their pajamas, and as the first
noise sounded we’d drive down the street, park, sit on the hood of the car and
They got older, moved away leaving us with our friends whose own children had
also moved on, our friends becoming our new family.

Moments pass with ‘oohs and aahs’ that follow some of the brighter and louder
Occasionally a white light glows to our right or left—fireflies carrying on with
their flirting, unperturbed by the noise of children with their flashlights and squirt
guns, running around the lawns and celebrating their childhood.

Eventually aloud crescendo, with lots of noise and lights for five or six more
minutes, as the firework display concludes.
The show ends, and we all fold up our chairs, pick up our empty wine bottles, and
walk home as the smoke waves goodbye, and quietly drifts east.

‘Another one?’ No just the lightning bugs.

Later that night with everyone gone and before bed, my wife and I go outside, lie
down on our lawn chairs for a few moments, hold hands and watch the fireflies
continue this July 4th performance.

Abi Gezunt, indeed.

– Stuart Terman

Stuart Terman – I’m a physician, previously Assistant Clinical Professor/ Ophthalmology/ Case Western Reserve/ also attending ocular surgeon at the Cleveland V.A. Hospital in my home city of Cleveland. I’ve had publications in Medical/Literary/Poetry/Surgical/Ocular Journals, including the ‘Annals of Plastic Surgery’, ‘Cathexis’, the ‘Northwest Indiana Literary Review’, the ‘Annals of Ophthalmology’, and the ‘Consultant for Pediatricians’, among a number of others over the years.

https://www.highshelfpress.com/decembernewspaper also recently online. (a photo journal)


Tiny Seed Literary Journal – Spring issue 2019