First edition | Another day in preschool

First Edition features new original works by Northern California Jewish writers. Appearing the first issue of each month, it includes a poem and an excerpt from a novel or short story.

by sam veytser

The humid desert air

The coarse, worn carseat

On my way to Tel Aviv

Just another day in preschool

Taken out by my mom,

Her warm hands

Sweet, lavender perfume

Lifting me out, carrying me away

Just another day in preschool

A gentle wind blowing

The sound of crickets

The gentle rock of being carried

The bounce in her step

A shriek tears the air

Shredding it into pieces

Straight into my ears

A klaxon death machine

The gentle rocking now a tsunami

Increasing in speed

The ground shakes

Dust in my eyes

I see my friends

Sleeping on the ground

Eyes closed

“Get up”

I want to shout

“Come with me”

But all that comes out

Is an airless gurgle

The ground drops under me

The sky a crystal lake

I feel my body shutting down

I land next to her

I look into her warm brown eyes

Smell her sweet lavender perfume

Feel her rapidly cooling hands

And close my eyes for the last time

Sam Veytser is a 14-year-old freshman at Los Altos High School and a member of Congregation Beth Am. He lives in Mountain View.