The braying coward in the room
reminds our dreaming hearts
following the Golden Rule —
to do unto others that which you would have done unto you
or at least to make the attempt
to look as if you’d paid attention
during that first decade of your own early existence
Yet apparently the memo
never appeared in the DNA
of such a barnacled baby branded by the horns of hell.
The indigenous grandfather, the shepherd, would say to his fold
the watchful courageous children
quiet now, young ones. Be still,
stop talking so much
keep your hands to yourself.
Don’t be a braggart
watch out for grandiosity and boasting;
the grandfather, the father, his hands ever-warm
tended to by his long-loving
steadfast, kind, capable of moving mountains
with her keen eyes…
a heart, a fortress
as mighty as the tides
as delicate and tenuous as a curled fern.
It is the space inside the
last page of the story
beyond needless words
that holds the children
eager for the sight of their kindred souls,
the scented earthy
from the foul-mouthed monster
born out of the fearful horns of hell.