The Value of Pennies
used to hide them
instead of Easter eggs,
rare steel War coins. We had to find
Personally, I am partial to pennies. When I see one, I pick it up. I love the hues of copper, polished red or patinated green.
Yesterday, to create this number twenty-six, I used pennies on hand. This morning, I remembered how my father, an amateur coin collector,and my mother would hide one hundred of his steel pennies around the house on Easter Sunday. My brother, sister, and I would seek them on window ledges, behind doors, under furniture. We had to count our finds–accounting for each hidden coin–and return them to Dad, who would exchange them for standard issue coins (heavier and shinier, but paradoxically less valuable).
My dad, born in 1938, became interested in coins when he was a boy with a paper route and collected money for subscriptions. He remembered these valuable but ugly WW II pennies minted when all available copper was needed to manufacture ammunition and wiring. Compared to standard pennies, these ‘steelies’ were too light, too rough and easily corroded–often with a tacky white coating forming–and too dull. They were also magnetic. It always amazed me that these coins, inferior in beauty and function, were so much more valuable due to rarity and historical imprint. But what did I know?
That memory morphed into this cinquain.