There isn’t room There’s already 3 or 4 roommates knocking elbows inside each tulip and arguing whose turn it is to go for beer. some dropped acid which is why the flowers are so bright. some are probably dead by now, it doesn’t matter. The park is full. There are exhausted families under wet blankets imitating litter. An oyster grows a pearl around a grain of sand, the park grows a child around a drop of blood. A girl strings a necklace of bushy yellow dandelions And makes a mock face at the white sour sap. Someone’s on stage having an argument with the microphone. Drumbeats from our old circle around the fire beat under the earth keeping the worms warm. Grassblades and knives, the park is a living cuckoo clock and we’re carved into it. As long as it stays a park anyone is welcome to the time of day as we beat our ridiculous wings and triumphantly yell “Cuckoo! Cuckoo!”
Julia Vinograd was Berkeley’s informal “poet laureate.” Her poems about Telegraph Avenue and life in Berkeley in the late 60’s and beyond were beloved by many. She died in December, 2018.