My daughter wants to take
a framed to school,
a nude with loose breasts and a belly
ripe as the . Why? Because
we’re studying frogs, she says,
and it’s a frog. I cock my head
to consider the angle of the draped arm
but can’t get past the female form.
My daughter, though, is swimming
in amphibians, bringing home
scribbled pictures of tadpoles sprouting
splayed feet. At night, she sleeps
in the bedroom I painted pink,
her shelves lined with confectionary
teapots and cups. By day, she wants
to be her brother when she grows up.
Lately, she’s morphed into
a creature who’d rather squirm free
than be held. O, how we see what we
want to see. My daughter, looking at
a nude, sees a frog for show-n-tell.
I look at her and see myself.
Everyone needs a poet in her life. My own personal poet doubles as my dear friend Deborah. Every so often, I wake up to a poem she’s left in my inbox. They’re always good; this one is exceptional. I can’t write a poem to save my soul. Well, the occasional limerick. But I’m lucky to have poetry — and poets — in my life.