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MacQueen’s Quinterly: Knock-your-socks-off Art and Literature
Issue 3: May 2020
Poem: 211 words [R]
By Scott Ferry

The Japanese Andromeda

grows taller now after we paid someone 
to cut down our fruitless plum tree 
which stole its sun. I enter my garage 
after work and notice a champagne 

bucket brimming with the opaque 
white flowers from this tree 
sitting on the dryer. As I enter the door, 
my daughter exclaims “It is time 

for the party! Don’t tell Nana!” 
I ask “What party?” and she answers 
“The surprise with the confetti! Don’t tell!” 
I am the only one leaving the house 

during this plague—my wife home 
with our new baby and her mother 
and Leilani. Before dinner she ushers 
us out into a bath of afternoon sun, 

Nana holding the baby, wife in cahoots 
with Lani, and me forming a circle around 
the silver container. And then Surprise! 
Ivory bells fly into the air 

and shower down onto our shoulders 
clinging to our hair. All day 
I have evaded invisible clouds 
of virus shooting from mouths 

threatening to erase light and breath. 
So I dig in with both hands 
and loft the brittle shells up into clouds 
of translucent hail which dance on the deck 

like hummingbird bones. I feel 
the moist flowers in my fingers 
as the fragile skin between brightness 
and silence floats around our bodies.

—Published previously in Letters in Quarantine (21 March 2020), a Facebook group founded by Arthur Kayzakian; poem appears here with poet’s permission.

Scott Ferry
Issue 3, May 2020

helps our veterans heal, as an RN. In previous lives he taught high school and practiced acupuncture. He has recent writing in Cultural Weekly, KYSO Flash, MacQueen’s Quinterly, Noble/Gas Qtrly, Slippery Elm, and Swimming with Elephants, among others. His first collection, The only thing that makes sense is to grow, was published by Moon Tide Press in December 2019.

Poet’s website: https://ferrypoetry.com

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