George Witte

To A Peanut

Misnomered bean of many purposes,
spreadable or whole, Carver's humble muse,

you lurk between ingredients as oil,
a manufacture trace enough to swell

pale lips to crimson plates and supersize
her tongue until she suffocates and dies.

I govern daughters rivalrous as queens,
one deaf from birth, her younger sister keen

with jealousy for unshared attention.
My routine weekend blur of errands runs

a slide show of suburban photo ops,
from dump to dry cleaner to Stop ‘n Shop

where, goading me, she chews you by mistake,
collapsing in anaphylactic shock

I can't arrest- her Epi-pen at home,
forgotten there with Benadryl and phone—

nor press a key to pause indifferent time,
excuse the blame or craft an alibi,

release her throat from inflammation's grip
to breathe and shriek, again an infant ripped

into our world.Imagining such harm
I grimace through a smile as she performs,

displaying you as if the universe
between two fingertips, creation hers,

blue eyes aglow with self-important glee:
"Now I can have a disability! "

From Does She Have a Name? (NYQ Books,2014)

Topic(s) of this poem: daughters, disability, parenthood

Poem Submitted: Friday, December 6, 2019

Form: Couplet

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