Ferlingetti’s Confetti
by Joan McNerney

How long have I been waiting and I am
still waiting for America to wake up
for women to be celebrated, for endless wars
to self-destruct, for the old guard to
become obsolete, for holy rollers
to roll off, somewhere far away

I am always waiting for this country to become sane
still waiting for Americans to put down their guns
and take up books. For education to be our strength
I am waiting for stupid catch phrases of politicians
to cause them to gag and retch. Always all the time
STILL waiting for America to grow up

I am waiting for the miracle of Ferlingetti’s
confetti to descend all over this planet descending
magically in all imaginable colors of the universe
dissolving hatred bringing a new world filled
with joy wonder happiness supreme frolicking
kissing hugging cavorting all in the stillness of this
moment realizing we are one and earth is our home

O how long must I still wait?

PAINTING: Map by Jasper Johns (1961).

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: Remembering how thrilled we were coming by subway into Greenwich Village listening to all the Beats. How we were not allowed to clap but could click our fingers because coffee shops did not have cabaret licenses. I read my poetry there too at the Village Vanguard. Ferlingetti, e e cummings, Oscar Wilde, and Allen Ginsberg were our heroes.  We never noticed they were all men. With this poem, I am trying to capture the rolling immediacy of Ferlingetti’s style.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Joan McNerney’s poetry is found in many literary magazines, such as Seven Circle Press, Dinner with the Muse, Poet Warriors, Blueline, and Halcyon Days. Four Bright Hills Press Anthologies, several Poppy Road Journals, and numerous Poets’ Espresso Reviews have accepted her work. Her work has received four Best of the Net nominations. Her latest titles are The Muse in Miniature and Love Poems for Michael  available on and