Today's poem is by Micheline Maylor

Conscientious objectors

She's learning to lie, in this car, right now, and to swear, too,
by the light of a taillight and its unannounced lane shift.
She's learning to take what her teacher says by half, to use
her own common sense. She's learning that skipping school
for the sake of catching something amazing like the science fair
at university, the opera, fireworks, something educational and wise,
has its consequences. She's learning to read ingredients, read
between the lines, that the FDA lies. She's learning about the man
on Wall Street who wants all the money, a leprechaun
named Gold-Wallet, the ways he'll trick her with glitter, electronics,
and buzz. She's learning about those men, their entertainment,
the Humberts of the world. She's learning to run. She's learning
double-speak, the slippery way of the word, the words,
the well-worded, the wisely worded, the way of the word,
the first word, the last word, about holding her tongue.
She's learning ignorance is bliss, that sometimes even I am tongue-tied.
She's learning that I could make it easier on her, easier on me, more blissful,
in this car, right now, by telling her a pretty lie. But I won't.

Copyright © 2017 Micheline Maylor All rights reserved
from Little Wildheart
The University of Alberta Press
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

Archives  Web Weekly Features  About Verse Daily  FAQs  Submit to Verse Daily  Follow Verse Daily on Twitter

Copyright © 2002-2017 Verse Daily All Rights Reserved