Originally posted on 7/19/2009.
A man with long hair and memory
is trying to break into my house
to rob or smudge me
while I am sleeping.
I hear him trying the locks and murmuring to himself.
It’s not a language I understand but I recognize it
as what I hear whenever I contemplate
nature versus nurture.
Louisville Slugger behind the door,
Bowie knife in the nightstand drawer.
One move, and I can pull that knife.
Two steps, and I can have that bat in my hand.
Two more and I can be
waiting behind the cabinet
where he won’t see me
as he enters,
but I’m still lying here
with choices hovering above me.
I can easily snatch the right one
out of the dawn at any time…
Grandfather, Stranger, whichever you are —
please come in. I’ve got coffee and tobacco
to scent the morning. For today, anyway,
we don’t need to bring the war into this.