I was the kid telling you
how your blood was not red enough,
making you create a pool of beets.

How the ladder breaks, its shadow
languidly resting
on the brick wall, frightens me.

I was the one wiggling in every puddle
home to hide the mud I was smeared
with when I demanded: Give back my pencil.
For pride, I always froze, flinched like
a carrot to be chopped.

Amongst the men-beasts, she has not a name.
Euphemistically I call her "my wife," or
"mother of the kids." When a neat colleague
asked who trimmed my eyebrows, I replied: The woman.

I was he drawing dodos and Aphrodite
of Milos with her severed arms, tribute
to the passed-away, in memory of my late
Grandma who hung on the wall in black
and white and rust on the frame, who I never

"Will you for once lay off
your liaisons?"
For the sake of the small ones,
yes, I will.