Wednesday, May 11, 2016


Fun at the Quinneys

Shawn’s younger brother
would eat a whole stick of butter.
Bite it and chew it like candy.
I watched him one day.
It was disgusting.

And though I wasn’t there (thank God)
it was reported he once had a bad case of poison ivy
All over his body and in his itch and frustration
he smashed his penis with the lid of the toilet
and had to have stitches.

I never asked if it helped.

And I once volunteered to become a human ramp
while sledding one day.
Me and Fat Tim side by side on the ground
at the end of the hump we’d been jumping.
My head by Tim’s feet.
Shawn at the top of the hill.

Sounded like fun until I saw Shawn careening
a bit off the track, the blade of the runner
heading straight for my neck.

Good thing I looked when I did
but I couldn’t help punching the crap out of Shawn
who couldn’t stop laughing.

I don’t remember what happened
to Fat Tim’s ankles.

           ---John Berry

John Berry

John Berry’s work has been published in Vox Poetica, The Yellow Chair Review, Disorder (a Red Dashboard publication) The Green Silk Journal, Crow Hollow 19 and The Good News Paper.  His first book of poems, Wobbly Man was published in the Spring of 2016.

A self-taught woodworker, carpentry contractor and promoter of all things poetry, he writes and works from his Winchester Virginia home with his beloved wife Brenda and their two yorkies,  Molly and Lily.  John hosts the Shenandoah Poetry Alliance Open Mic on the second Wednesdays of every month at the Handley Library in Winchester Virginia.

A lover of the unexplored byway or patch of woods never walked, John has nonetheless remained a native Virginian, finding variety and freshness even in the familiar if one is unafraid to look closely at their surroundings and especially at himself. 


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