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A new book arrives
in the mail. Words and phrases
scatter— drift upwards.

With the bedroom door
cracked open, I wait hours for
a poem to slip in.

The time falls after ten oclock and I should be sleeping, but I feel a pulse of poetry, a metronome in my head, counting off syllables, intricate soundings of consonants and double vowels—

Brendan will not remember this late afternoon. A moment when he looked intently in my face and seemed to understand who I was. Clearly. For the first time. A means of differentiating Daddy from Papi, me from Ricky. Brendan smiled wide from his cradle-swing. Wriggling as my water-baby, limbs jerking as babies startle, arms and legs flung out without caution or speculation of effect—

Is this what I want my new poem to discuss? Or is it intending to go on a different direction?

Coiled as a crescent,
my koi-child in his crib turns
to face me, laughing.

The hive of ideas
grows quiet tonight—sleeping
full, within itself.

It's bound to happen:
some nights I hate poetry,
hate paper, pens... words.


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