Monkeys and Fortune Cookies

Mean Fortune Cookie
Mean Fortune Cookie (Photo credit: DavidErickson)

Several of you seemed to enjoy the fortune cookie poem yesterday, thank you, and so I dug deeper for an old poem I hadn’t read in a while.

Everyone loves to add the words “in bed” to the end of their fortunes, but when my youngest was quite little we had a game of making up a phrase just before opening the cookies. We found it to be great fun, even if nobody else understood. I guess the little monkey prodigy showed a great love of playing with words even then.

Fortune Cookies

Maybe because it was late 
or just such a busy day, 
but we forgot tradition 
and left them where they lay. 

Movies and popcorn, baths 
and stories, teeth then lights. 
The oldest will fall asleep last, 
reading into the night. 

Jon is probably snoring, 
a blinking game at his side. 
"At least today wasn't boring," 
he'd said, and all of us nearly died. 

But the youngest, that would be him; 
pacing in the hall. I call him in, 
as restless as he, and ask 
if he'd have a cookie with me. 

He smiles and gives me my phrase, 
and I think a moment for his. 
I must end mine "with monkeys" 
and he "if you know what it is." 

We crack open the brittle shells 
ready for fortune and laughs. 
He giggles "Use wisely your wealth-- 
if you know what it is." 

"Be most affectionate today-- 
with monkeys," I say. So I kiss him 
and pick the chimp up swinging, 
counting my wealth and singing.

12 Comments Add yours

    1. sonofwalt says:

      Thank you. I have never tried to publish or read this poem anywhere, and I don’t know why. Maybe it was just a bit too precious to me.


  1. slpmartin says:

    I too…loved it…and the love conveyed.


    1. sonofwalt says:

      Thank you. 🙂


  2. David,
    You have truly made my dad heart smile. I love it when you share your poetic gems. I love how you tie it all together in the end. Thanks for warming my heart a bit tonight.Excellent!




    1. sonofwalt says:

      From one poet dad to another, I truly appreciate those words, Stephen. Thank you!


  3. haha … be most affectionate today with monkeys! ha so cute… My little boy told me that he didn’t want to go to preschool and when I asked why he said ‘the place is full of monkeys!’


    1. sonofwalt says:

      haha, that’s great! Well, my youngest, Micah has always had a fascination with monkeys (thank god the zombie phase didn’t last), and has been often called Micah the Monkey by the family. You can find his blog here on wordpress at He’s got a mind of his own and quite the dry sense of humor.

      This poem was written reflecting back on the time when he was quite small. But now my baby is 16. I still cannot quite grasp that.


    2. I will take a look. they are so fabulous, my heart is trying to lift off and go swing through the trees!


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