Wednesday, September 25, 2013

My Poor Fool

“Why should a dog, a horse, a rat have life, and thou no breath at all?”
—King Lear
Heaven was just the place for him to go.
He never understood this world. You know,
We would discuss it over marmalade—
Those violent forces—how the world was made.
He would take soldiers—strips of buttered toast—
And dip them in his egg, completely lost.
Most considered him a child—a half-wit.
Like any parent, my poor heart was split.
His gags were creaky as an outhouse door,
And yet I loved him—loved him to the core.
He turned the girls to jelly. In his eye,
There twinkled something wild in black tie
Which frightened my officials, children, and dogs.
He painted funny faces in the fogs
Which rolled in like thunder from the sea
Those nights we kept each other company.
He tested my love constantly. He’d twist
My heart right into knots—without a sweat—
One drop of effort. For some reason I
Don’t fully comprehend, he teased me, “Why
Are you so melancholy, Lord—so blue?”
He pinged me with a pebble from his shoe,
His face a mask of innocence. Of course,
I think he knew he would wind up a corpse.
I hanged the lad in public to remind
The peoples of the Earth that God had died.
They stared at him like vegetables. The few
Who cried for Mercy I hanged twice. Like you,
I wished his last remarks had shown more flair,
A little bravery. Jerked in the air,
He gargled, “Jesus,” and choked. His final joke,
One word, dissovling in the sky, like smoke.


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