Tough Love For 2nd Graders in Mississippi (“Softer than Oil”)

Skinned knees don’t leak like BP

from a loose cap in the Gulf Sea

Turtle hairs do not wash up in surf of bruised patellas

and gulls do not lose the individuality of feathers

when you  somersault backwards on concrete.

Your body does not lose its dignity when you collide

after twirling through ceilings that were ground

that were ceilings that were ground that were ceilings.

*      *         *            *             *           *

Your blood was spilled ink on concrete.

A song of growth for fledglings.

Oil taxidermying the living

created a symphony of croaks

with sheet music.

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