Spring is here.

Earth Day volunteers hand me

a to do list to preserve life on earth.

I walk, drive a hybrid if I have to,

jiggle the thermostat cool

in winter and warm in summer.

I climb up Fort Lee Road,

take a short-cut on the shoulder of the highway

to the G.W. Bridge to the best bakery

in Bergen County..

An unending flow of behemoths race by

careening around the corner as if vying

for the finish line at the Indy 500.

On Earth Day, I’m pleased to pass a patch of pansies,

yellows and blues, a surviving island surrounded

by a sea of asphalt, grime and a discarded pair

of black panties lying in the driveway of Sunoco.

Exhaust fumes and grit fill foul air.

With a running nose I step over mangled hubcaps,

busted Budweisers, a cracked five gallon jug

of Deer Park pristine drinking water and a devilish

looking horned, ribbed sex toy that must have been

tossed soon after the panties hit the ground.

I long for sun-filled April mornings when blooming forsythias

were untarnished fences of pure yellow and robust

azalea’s pink and purple blossoms illuminated front yards

like a Florentine wedding celebration.

I savored soft April evenings when my girlfriend and I

parked my old Chevy in secluded parks and streets

where giant oaks and maples provided lots of cover.

All we craved was privacy for unleashing youthful passion

as our car shook and shuddered to the sweetest pleasure

of springtime lust, grounded to the earth as best we could.

Milton P. Ehrlich 199 Christie St. Leonia, N.J. 07605