Mateo County Easter-Egg Hunt
Daniel G. Snethen
Easter Sunday 1928, the entire village
of Burlingame gathered for the annual
San Mateo County Easter-Egg Hunt.
All the grown-ups were there,
watching, waiting for the loser.
Praying it wasn’t their Tommy
or Jenny or their tooth-gapped grandchild.
Old Morris painfully remembered,
as he limped to his seat of honor at the head
of the ring of losers, how they crippled his leg
seventy-two years ago and how he was the first
of a long line of leprose losers to gain
in the ring of grisly remembrance.
Morris hoarsely announced the starting of the
whilst I and the other children scrambled,
among the dandelions, gathering colored eggs
into our wicker-woven Easter egg baskets.
I fought over these eggs at the same time
hoping I would not be the one
who claimed the egg with the mark,
the mark which would send us all into a frenzy,
where we pummeled and spit on and kicked
the little pus-eyed loser, we did not want to
Morris announced the mark was an orange
dot in a green circle. Relieved, it was not me.
That was my third and final hunt before we
to San Francisco some twenty-five miles away.
And my mother said we’d never return to that
where I helped to nearly kill that little
and watched his sister Shirley
viciously kicking him in his pus-eyed face.
Daniel G. Snethen is the owner and
publisher of Darkling Publications. He serves as vice-president of the South
Dakota State Poetry Society. Recently (May 2017), 10 pages of his poetry was
anthologized in Resurrection of a
Sunflower, a tribute to Vincent Van Gogh, curated by Catfish McDaris.
Snethen's poetry has been published by Bear
Creek Haiku; Cover of Darkness; Danse
Macabre; Dark Gothic Resurrected; Haiku Journal; The Horror Zine; Miller's
Pond; Pasque Petals: Thirteen Myna Birds, and several other publishers of
poetry. Snethen also coaches oral interpretation of literature and Poetry Out Loud.
He has qualified two high school students for the National Poetry Out Loud
competition in Washington DC and has had the SD State Poetry Out Loud runner up
on two separate occasions. His favorite poet is William Blake and his favorite
poem is “The Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner” by Samuel Taylor Coleridge.