by Kevin T. McEneaney
When I was young and excited as a dandelion seed,
there was no “Coney Island of the Mind.”
There was a real, swinging carnival in Brooklyn
that eschewed metaphor for spontaneous fun
and the only depression in the atmosphere
was the child who did not repeat a ride
for the nth time, or kid who dropped
an ice cream cone on boardwalk.
The Lenape name for the island
(annexed by landfill)
was “land without shadows”
where at two I received a bad sunburn.
Raucous shouts of children squealing
echoed in twilit air when paranoia
was merely a momentary event
as one was herded to school basement
for shelter from Russian nukes.
The view from the Great Wonder Wheel
was breathtaking panorama
of seascape and light glittering—
not an illusion of the mind!