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"Softee" by Susanne Braham

“Softee” by Susanne Braham

It Happened at Midnight:
The Fate of Part of an Icy Couple
By Susanne Braham

A bit of Mr. Softee
dripped off the tip
of Stewart’s lazy tongue.

Mrs. Softee,
Ineeda Cohn
in former years,
before she tied the knot,
was none too pleased
but soothed her wounded pride
by quickly pouring
sprinkles on Mr. Softee’s
slowly melting head.

An icy couple,
she was, in fact, no softy.
So he was chastised,
and none too prettily,
for tempting guys like Stewart.

How Stewart came
to hold her husband
in his too-warm hand
that fateful midnight

may ne’er be known,

but Mrs. Softee
after that
was always seen

Mr. Softee
By Jeanette Cheezum

I loved everything about summer as a child.
Lightning bugs placed in a jar, walking in the
afternoon rain, kicking and stomping in fresh
mud puddles with my new red boots.

But nothing could beat the sound of the
Mr. Softee truck coming around the corner
from Grandma’s house.

Beads of sweat in a neat row nestled in a
crease under my throat. A dime in my pocket
ready to pay.

Standing in line waiting my turn was more than
I could bear until my tiny hand clutched the
treat I had waited for. I ran to the nearby tree
Ice cream dripping down my arm, I’d lick it off
so as not to waste a bit. I was such a lucky
boy my tongue making the treat look tidy and
my heart skipped a beat.

By Laura Zucca-Scott

A smile in the summer
Was simple
As innocence
And dreams
Melted away

Snow Cones
By Gwen Monohan

Viewing the Three Peaks of Otter,
later a profiled Stoneyman,
raised degrees of our last journey
beyond just those altitudes we faced.
Holding our attention toward
vast heights, snowy overlooks.
Repelling the recent climbing effort itself,
through rising mists of Blue Ridge forest.

Then retracing vistas of fond memories,
when all our summers seemed like spring
and we sought only exciting sites.
Especially to glimpse lost carnivals at night,
where we gamely took more chances.
Ferris wheels seemed to sway
above clouds then where our
Mister Softees would always melt.

Back in My Day
By Nathan Gunter

She had nostalgia like an ice cream headache.
All the things she’d lost
constricted the veins behind her eyes:
Mister Softee’s face on the ice cream truck
Vicki Lawrence doing Mama on The Carol Burnett Show
a white president
a world she recognized.

She could press her tongue against the roof of her mouth all day
and the ache wouldn’t subside.
Her head aching, her neck stiff
she couldn’t look anywhere
but behind.