“The Caterpillar and the Horse” (October 2)

Literology / Wednesday, October 2nd, 2013

My darling Daina has assigned me the subject of pie for today’s autumnal post. Not having much to say about pie, I asked whether she was sure. Her response was, “It’s done, Mom. It’s pie.” So, here is a pie poem.

10.2 The Caterpillar and the Horse

“Are you content now?” said the Caterpillar.
“Well, I should like to be a little larger, sir if you wouldn’t mind,” said Alice: “three inches is such a wretched height to be.”
                                                      –Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland

When a woman erects a zebra tent
on the first real day of “Florida fall,”
when the weather plays nicer
than her children often do—
when she showers then sweats,
feels her work heels drive
through soggy grass clippings
into a crack in the concrete
where only weeds live,

she expects


to play

in it.

With one daughter too tall,
the other too small,
she looks for Alice desserts,
a Caterpillar mushroom in the shape of a pie
on dirty countertops and stained tablecloths,
near dusty bookshelves by fingerprint windows

to the sound of the perfect-sized son

because he cannot ride
the horse.

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