Jackson’s Third Birthday by
(87 Stories)

Prompted By Toys & Games

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/ Stories

Jackson at his birthday party, 1999. Photo credit: RBZ.

We know your passion for trucks, and so
We come to the park bearing trucks.
Pickups and semis, bulldozers and fire engines,
Forklifts, dump trucks, truck videos,
Shirts with trucks and caps with trucks
Wrapped in bright truck paper.

We know your passion for trucks, and so / We come to the park bearing trucks.

And when you unwrap each truck,
We see we have chosen well.
Your eyes shine, you grin and laugh,
You run the truck along the ground
Making happy truck noises.

Any two of these treasures would delight you
Any four, content you for a month
But there are many who love you
So the trucks keep coming
Each new truck diverts you from the last
Until the playground is littered
With abandoned trucks.

Yesterday you could not have imagined so many trucks.
Today they’re yours.

And tomorrow,
All the trucks in the world
Will not satisfy
Your desire.

Jackson is now 20 and a creative writing major at UC San Diego.

Profile photo of John Zussman John Zussman
John Unger Zussman is a creative and corporate storyteller and a co-founder of Retrospect.

Characterizations: been there, right on!, well written


  1. Suzy says:

    John, I love this poem! As the mother of a boy, I can relate to the birthday party scene you describe. And the picture is priceless! Glad to know that Jackson is following in the family writing tradition.

  2. How lovely, thank you so much. They were the greatest passion of his life for a long time, it’s true. Desire — now that’s a trickier subject!

  3. Betsy Pfau says:

    Very sweet, John. And nice to see this expressed in a different way. Good to know that Jackson has moved beyond trucks to become a writer himself.

  4. rosie says:

    John I loved this. I had two boys, and the older one was particularly fascinated by trucks. We had truck and bus shaped books. A built up garage toy that had all kinds of truck roads parking and moving trucks from place to place. Even an electric truck.. and a collection of little cars and trucks for racing. Thank you for your story and the happy memories I recalled as a result of your writing.

  5. Reginald says:

    Test comment: I remember this poem from when you workshopped it at the Foothill Writers Conference.

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