Easter dumb bunnies
Giant SweeTart
by Yvonne Zipter

Like the sugared heart of a candy gremlin,
it was my only companion those nights
when I sat for the kids next door, drugged
with sleep already when I arrived.

The plastic wrapper crackled
like little electric charges
as I wrestled it open, liberating
a pink hockey puck of pucker.

With the neighbor lady’s copy
of In Cold Blood spilled open
in my lap, I’d gnaw the rim
of the calcified sweet, my teeth

etching perfectly parallel scars there,
as Perry Smith and Dick Hickock
shimmered to life and my pulse raced
with something like pleasure.

PHOTOGRAPH: In a candy coma — Yvonne Zipter (left) and her sister, Easter, 1958 or 1959, Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: When I first contemplated the prompt for this series, I was certain I would be writing a poem about my mother, given that I often fondly recall the delectable treats she baked. But the memory of the Giant SweeTarts I would eat while babysitting was so vivid that I knew I needed to write about that.

YZ smile

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Yvonne Zipter is the author of the chapbook Like Some Bookie God (Pudding House Publications, 2006) and a full-length collection, The Patience of Metal (Hutchinson House, 2000). Her poems have appeared in such periodicals as Poetry, Calyx, Crab Orchard Review, Metronome of Aptekarsky Ostrov (Russia), Bellingham Review, and Spoon River Poetry Review, as well as several anthologies. She is the recipient of a fellowship to the Summer Literary Seminar in St. Petersburg, Russia, and an Illinois Arts Council Literary Award for the poem “Grace Lesson.” She has also published two nonfiction books, short fiction, and essays.