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In a Quest for Answers | Milton P. Erlich

After celebrating my wife’s 89th birthday,

we googled a man who knows answers

to all of life’s fundamental questions.

He lived far away, and parking was impossible.

I left our car alongside a moat guarding a castle.

Screeching white egrets patrolled the grounds.

A longtime hiker, I could walk around the world,

but my wife was increasingly fragile,

so we decided to hitch a ride—something

I haven’t done since I hitched to college in Iowa City.

We got picked up by an 18-wheeler truckdriver—

a woman with eyes as black as explosive licorice.

Flabbergasted, at her insights, butterflies

flew out of my mouth as I marveled at her ability

to turn our lives inside-out—like an Indian Fakir

making a venomous cobra rise at his musical command.

I tried to thank her, but she drove away,

and left us resting on a bed of pheromone-scented

paperwhites, where rain never touches the ground,

on what was to become our new home married to the earth.

Milton P. Ehrlich Ph.D. is an 88-year-old psychologist and a veteran of the Korean War. He has published many poems in periodicals such as the London Grip, Arc Poetry Magazine, Descant Literary Magazine, Wisconsin Review, Red Wheelbarrow, Christian Science Monitor, and the New York Times.

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