Ice Cream Truck

Poem by W. Roger Carlisle

Whistles and toots echo down the street
from the Calliope; “POP GOES THE WEASEL”
sings the metallic pied piper, promising joy,
instant ice cream ecstasy.

“ICE CREAM! ICE CREAM!” my friends would shout.
It didn’t matter what I was doing; I ran.
I felt my heart keeping time to the Calliope.
My every weakness congealed into
an unbounded desire for sugar.

All across the neighborhood I could see
boys and girls running, joining a stampede of appetites.
There were Freeze Pops, Oreo cookie sandwiches,
King Cones, Chocolate Eclairs, Bubblegum Swirls, Creamsicles,
Crunch Bars, Drumsticks, Fudgesicles, Double-D Snowballs,
sherbet push-up pops, cherry and blue raspberry bomb pops,
toll house cookie sandwiches, Klondike chocolate tacos.

Like an empty whisky bottle under the bed,
a cocaine high sparking energy,
a playboy magazine hidden in the nightstand,
a red negligee on a hook,
ice cream is evidence of that one desire is
so delectable, so insatiable
that it overshadows all of my life.

My maturity is choked out of me by appetite.
There is just no stopping this primal right of childhood,
the good humor demons running past my house,
the endless dreaming of ice cream.
Oh the agony if you have no cash on hand.

W Roger Carlisle is a 75-year-old, semi-retired physician. He currently volunteers and works in a free medical clinic for patients living in poverty. He is on a journey of returning home to better understand himself through poetry. He hopes he is becoming more humble in the process.

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