To promote Chesterton High School’s Poetry Jam, I asked teachers to provide a word or phrase to be included in a new poem I would read at the jam. I was given the following words and phrases:
- rainbows and unicorns
- chocolate pudding
- skinny jeans
- creative chaos
- juxtaglomerular apparatus
- eating a dozen steamed crabs coated in Old Bay seasoning
- Bilbo Baggins
- melon baller
- believing in achieving
- just another day in paradise
- I just don’t feel like adulting today
Here’s the result:
Blitzkrieg: a sudden attack of rainbows by unicorns
hoping to start the reign of chocolate pudding.
That’s what I would have said when I was 8
when I spent my time playing with Spirographs curving lines for hours.
I didn’t need to know the word epitrochoidal to describe the fun I had, but
it wouldn’t have hurt, and somebody needed to know it to create that game.
It was fun.
More fun than skinny jeans
to an 8 year old
before I drew my stick figure peers in middle school
or spirographed callipygians in college.
It was the creative chaos the Spirograph offered that allowed
my juxtaglomerular apparatus enough time to outpace the
blitzkrieg of hormones my pituitary sent across calcium channels.
At 12 I didn’t contend with the apparatus of my hair, even though it greatly
suffered from a comorbidity of coquelicot cowlick and age-otori.
If I went to the barber an Aragorn, I left a Frodo.
Or more accurately, I entered a Bilbo Baggins and left a ginger Gallum.
13 year old me didn’t have to know Yttrium is element 39.
But somebody should have told me that chemistry is just another way to ask Y.
And might increase your chances of becoming a bonding pair with someone
who only likes smart guys who aren’t too noble, gassy, or Mercurial.
I’m not 13 anymore
And though I keep saying “I just don’t feel like adulting today,”
I can’t remember once as a kid saying I was kidding
when I said I was believing in achieving just another day in paradise.
And for me at 13 that usually meant cracking and
eating a dozen steamed crabs coated in Old Bay seasoning.
It always climaxed at the succulent propreantepenultimate,
but I don’t learn the lesson of moderation with shellfish or vocabulary.
I learned it with age.
Us adults keep saying you kids keep getting weirder and obscener
Always on your texts and never writing checks.
But kids only play with the toys that are given to us:
like Snapchat and Spirographs.
My only concern is if people ask each other first if they want to play.
If my income came as a
then I could rest of my laurels, and not reflect on how to navigate our river of time.
And I’m not a melon baller or ukulele player with or without the adjectives removed.
I just make it as a teacher.
So I think about that 8 year old turning 13
And eventually thirty-three
And now, if I had it my way
my hair cut would still cost 10 bucks and
my first decree would be
a blitzkrieg of rainbows and unicorns
will commence and continue
until a reign of chocolate pudding
has been established
for at least 8 years
Or until the people sing
Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto
Thank you very much, Chesterton High School.