The Caterpillar, a poem from Field Days

The Caterpillar


At the Addison County Field Days,

our local county fair,

there’s a new act called


The President. A professor,

off for the summer,

does a card trick


he doesn’t have a good

explanation for.

How it works.


Producing a card that seems

to have been shot out

of a cannon. Swirled


in a tube of cotton candy.

Without a number, a face

or one of the four suits.


To let you know that’s the one

you picked, without touching it.

It’s blank. An end-of-summer


memory. A whirl-a-gig of sorts.

The Caterpillar. You can sit in

with a friend, who becomes


your girlfriend, when the ride’s

roof comes over you.

Where you can hold hands,


kiss. For a few minutes.

Until the world is the world

again. Outside. And you’ve spent


all your money for another

year. And now, as you are,

you’re still amazed, trying


to guess how that card

rose from his hand.

Where the girl went.


By the end of the night.

How many arms you would need

to carry what you’ve won.


       — Gary Margolis, Cornwall


Login for Subscriber Access

This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.

Addison County Independent

58 Maple Street
Middlebury, VT 05753

Phone: 802.388.4944
Fax: 802.388.3100