Roll up the throw rug, gypsy sailor–
if not for country, then at least
for Self (for once).
Remember your days
of sheltered altruism,
never to return in this lifetime,
save the effect
that procreation produces
through irrational instinct.
I really wish
I could use my arms.
I took a day to spell my name,
Begot four kids and cooked a goose,
Remarked upon the crooked ways
Of law-enforcement officers,
Caught a stray cat, made it tame,
Released it into calmer seas,
Observed its boldest swimming stroke
Until after about an hour
It lost its life and floated out
To open water, past the boats;
Became a snack for orca young.
I started feeling rather bad,
But after all, I saved that cat!
Perhaps the water didn’t work
For its land-dwelling tendencies
Requiring motion-ceasing rest
A back float just can’t satisfy.
The tide went out, and so the cat
Kept drifting to the deep abyss
Until a mighty albatross
Came gliding by on limber wings
And signaled to its family
That maybe furry mammals can
Adapt to open ocean climes.
But after a few seconds’ look,
The sea bird found it was deceived
And called off all its flighted kin.
It beat its wings and gained some height,
Resumed its path across the sky,
Alone—alone as usual—
And traveling to unknown space.
I managed to observe all this
A hundred miles away on land
With super strong binoculars.
I started to convince myself
That maybe I had sinned against
The animal kingdom that day,
A realm of which I am a part.
But I reminded myself then
That my value on this earth
Is not that of those lesser drones
And packed up my binoculars,
Chucked them off the roof
With all my worldly strength
And laughed a hearty laugh.
Am I a lesser specimen than you, o intimidating scoundrels of hostage-holding expertise? Am I to go down as a pawn in the pyramid scheme you’ve perpetrated since the beginning of human literacy? Just put me out of my misery!
I really wish I could use my arms.