Kids Ask

His mother didn’t want to die alone, so
this lonely, only child,
had his humanity
sucked up by her craving,
his love crushed by her appetite
like he was junk food. He had

no normal questions —
his were why
does a cheetah not have wheels,
a bumble bee not have gasoline
engines for power,
a flower not sneeze when
allergic to people. She said

ask your Father, when he gets
off his high horse,
if he comes home. That child’s
questioning continued

Why doesn’t the horseman do direct deposit,
leave the money in the bank
leave us alone

If you lead a horse to water,
why would you want it to drink–
won’t it get drunk. Shouldn’t you

change fathers in mid-stream,
take the rapids to divorce court
splash cologne on a fish. This

child knew somehow
Mom, missing answers,
asking no questions
would jump off the roof,
try to take him with her
but being very astute
he’d live alone
run away. No

question about it,
he can fly alone–
she can’t
missing love
—- Douglas Gilbert

Poetry Books By Douglas Gilbert