Vox Populi

A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature

Michael T. Young: The Monster Under My Daughter’s Bed

During bedtime my little spider monkey 
asked what we’re doing about global warming,
and I struggled to be honest, 
because I knew I was failing her, 
 
because I’m not breaking down doors 
or burning flags, but like a president 
I’m disregarding all the agreements 
we agreed to, allowing her spirit animal 
 
to go extinct for the logging industry, 
taking tourist pictures of glacial ice melt, 
raising stronger Katrinas 
from the warm and rising seas. 
 
And she who fears lightning and rain 
shook beside me. So I put my arm around her 
because I’m supposed to give her 
a safe world to learn and love,
 
but I can’t, because we’re drilling deeper, 
cutting faster, we’re exploding our way 
to the burning blue center of fossilized life, 
until we stare into the coal black eyes 
 
of the monster we assure our children 
doesn’t exist, but I hear snort and growl 
when I kiss my daughter on the head 
and send her to sleep.

Michael T. Young’s collections of poetry include The Infinite Doctrine of Water (Terrapin, 2018).

Copyright 2019 Michael T. Young

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