Author's Note: I’m absolutely delighted with the Apple Watch I got for my birthday. It tracks my exercise, and if I fail to reach 10,000 steps, Siri warns me, saying “Steve, you’re fat and lazy and if you don’t close your circles, no one will ever love you,” so I wander out into the starless Berkshire night muttering imprecations against Mark Zuckerberg under my breath.
Poem for my Granddaughter
She swears by the River Styx because she’s nine and takes her oaths seriously. Her favorite goddess is Athena, though she didn’t get how Zeus could swallow Metis whole like that, so I explained that he tricked her into becoming a fly, whereupon he turned into a lizard and snapped her up with his sticky tongue. What she wants is a world without cruelty or lies, where girls can play basketball and read books about dragons. She can enumerate and describe their various tribes, their social structures, their conflicts and wars. When it comes to movies, she likes the ones with magic, and enjoys TV shows like Doctor Who. She has a little sister and a secret sister. She’s partial to graphs and chemistry. If she had her way, there’d be no cheese, but she would eat watermelon at every meal.
What I Want
To make a hundred people laugh, open a can with just my fingertips, wear clothing that shines in the dark. I want to ride a bicycle all the way from Pittsfield to my cousin’s house in Richmond Hill. I want to eat a stew so filling, I won’t be hungry for a week, except for Key Lime Pie. I want to wake up before the sun and run for miles on a dark highway. I want to take a bath in gold coins, pull a wad of hundreds from my back pocket, peel off six for something I don’t need. I want to dig a hole big enough to scare my neighbors. When the sun goes down, I want to sing the dogs to sleep. I want cats to follow me down to the pond. I want to sleep through the night and wake up full of joy. I want to learn to play the flute, the drums, the violin. I want to juggle chainsaws and flaming swords. Just once at a wedding, I want to see someone object, then forever hold their peace.
©2022 Steve Klepetar
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