fairy dust

--for Patrick

         You nearly fell in the driveway    
       bolting from the bus,
threw down your Spider Man backpack,
strung together some words
about flying.

        When most contents were
        sufficiently divested, you pulled
from the depths what my hackneyed
eyes identified as glitter
in a Zip-lock bag.

        Yes, I should have known
        better.  Four decades living
        in illusion, though, taxes
any man's imaginative faculties.

        You weren't upset when a few
        vibrant flecks lodged in the locking
strips flittered away in the breeze.
You just stepped into the grass,
dipped your thumb and forefinger

        like snuff, and produced
        enough to give you wings,
which I surmised sprouted
the moment you parted your fingers
over your head, then flapped

        your arms around the yard
        until landing in a lump
near the garden.  
Maybe I ought to try that.
Together we could rise
        above this labyrinth,

        Daedalus and Icarus,
escaping that curmudgeon
King Midas and his minotaur.
By the time Theseus arrives
        to cut through the bull,
        we'll be long gone en route
to paradise, so long as our wings
don't come unglued souring
too close to the sun.                  


anywhere but t(here)


        I wouldn't have assumed
        CNN would be on above
the trash receptacles
and tray stacks.

        A “reality” show maybe
        or one of those early afternoon
programs that ends
in a brawl when

        a paternity test reveals
        a baby's father
to be a cousin from Idaho.
I guess there's a little

        something for everyone
        here at Happy Meal headquarters.
While my kids bathe their nuggets
in sweet & sour sauce

        and find creative uses for plastic
        Chinese-made prizes,
my attention is on “Breaking News”
from Colorado.  

        This time it's a movie theater
        where the Dark Knight rises
grim visaged like a prop, intent
on reaping an aestival crop

        of inchoate purity
        with tear gas, a Remington, and glocks.
Youths out late, lovers on dates:
martyrs to a hate
        they could only before imagine

        existed anywhere but there,
        1700 miles from my cheap salad
and children's processed chicken.

        I avert long enough to try
        smiling at my son,
two french fries      pillared
from his upper lip like a walrus.

        My daughter wants to play
        in the park.  And so do I.

Ted Millar is a high school English teacher in Mahopac, New York, and adjunct instructor of creative writing and poetry at Marist College in Poughkeepsie, New York. His poems have appeared in Scintilla, GFT Press, Inklette, The Grief DiariesCactus Heart, Aji, Wordpool Press, The Artistic Muse, ChronogramBrickplight and Inkwell. He lives in the heart of apple and wine country in New York's Hudson Valley with his wife and two children. Follow him on Twitter @tedmillar