Poetry Corner: Puzzling

by Jim Farfaglia



Texas was always first,

the piece as big as all get out.

California was easy too,

fitting like a bent arm against the Pacific.


Florida was fun,

heading south like a hitchhiker’s thumb.

New York a cinch – my home state –

and way up north, Maine would go.


Then over to the Great Lakes

where I’d slip on Michigan’s mitten

and make a stop in the Midwest

for the piggybackin’ Dakotas.


Alaska and Hawaii were freebies –

floating off to the side in ocean blue,

and I loved how they bunched together

all those New England states – bonus!


Mississippi and Alabama went back to back,

ready for a duel,

while I pulled on Louisiana’s work boot

and picked up Oklahoma by its handle,


‘til I was down to the last few –

too rectangled, too middle-America

to tell one from the other.

But I kept at it, determined to unite those states,


to piece together the greatness of my country.

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