“Human Beans”
by John Berry

2021 Poetry of the Sacred Contest Honorable Mention

Sprouting seed in Faizpur, India.

Photo Credit: Chetan Kolte

We tried.
Well, some of us did anyway.

But like beans who’ve reached
The top of the trellis

We spin crazily around
Looking for purchase

Some handhold higher
Than we’ve been.

And didn’t we make a useful
Sturdy fence.

And didn’t we forget it was meant
For more than just convenience.

As a budding poet from a very young age, John Berry was that kid that his grade school pals would ask to write love poems for their girlfriends. But like many who let everyday life and work interrupt their passions, John wrote very little after a few semesters in college, and beginning to work as a self-employed carpentry contractor, a trade which he still plies (and now teaches) to this day. Like many with the good common sense to rediscover themselves later in life, John did return to poetry, finding both solace, and some small talent for the written and spoken word. His third book of poetry, The Lawnmower Poems was published in 2019.