I could describe the arc of piss
as sanctifying the changing table
or argue that his wailing resembles
a certain style of opera—
one develops a taste for its peaks
as evidence of proper training,
the cultivation of a gift.
I might tell you that when the dog
tugs the leash in one direction
and the stroller rolls in the other
it’s similar to the push and pull
of family and vocation, and each
in turn alters its course.
Surely I’d research and touch on
why gerbils eat their young
and moose will charge if you dare step
between mother and calf.
But none of this is the truth
I tell myself or don’t,
depending on the morning:
it’s not a set of lyrics, it’s prose—
as in pedestrian, a man
on foot, not some freak stallion,
not a Clydesdale, not even a draft—
and every day I have to choose
whether to write myself in.
Appeared originally in Words & Images.