Today's poem is by Ron Slate

L'Etat C'Est Moi

That's my green garden
on the new dollar bill.

Everyone is as unique
as my habitual sunflower,

everyone demands privileges,
that's how we know we're equal.

But you can't expect me to meet
your every need and abolish the storm

swamping your cellar and all
your uninsured memorabilia.

The sunflower's privilege
is what makes it—what? Obedient to solar flares.

The data-orb hovers over my perimeter,
in crisis it answers with forensics.

My sunflower was grown green.
I envisioned green and it was so.

The worst thing in the world is—
what? Your caucus is out of coffee.

Time to learn to strike while the other side
dreams of Swiss chard in arterial moonlight.

My mother hunted for slugs with a flashlight, tweezers
and a jar. Think like a slug she said squeeze out its secrets.

You touch the fence, you feel the juice.
Oh don't be so sensitive, it's for the groundhogs.

There's a tiny image of me
on the nosecone of the F/A-18E/F,

as small as a sunflower seed.
Humility—seed without its shell.

I know I'm aggressive and I know
I'm benign. It's my privilege to say so.

Copyright © 2011 Ron Slate All rights reserved
from New South
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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