Poem Day 1, Napowrimo,
I never ran around with scissors,
daring a wound to my head.
I was afraid to even use them.
I never placed my tongue
on a hot meal, steaming
smoke from the fragile plate.
I never crossed the pike, even
when the little white man appeared.
A car could suddenly swipe me.
I never stopped breathing,
avoiding all manners of death,
from gun to rope to drowning.
I never failed to pray at night.
Angels came downstairs to say,
shaking their heads, I won't die.
One day the tower would fall.
Leave a pile of stones around
its clearing, remains for seekers
to dig out and steal. Nobody
would remember how the jester
sang, like a clown mask of sound,
forcing laughter from everyone.
The nobles would be forgotten,
with their oversize hungers,
swallowing chickens in minutes,
yelling for more wine so drunken
fights could lead to joust challenges.
The king alone escaped, taking off
his royal clothes, passing through
a secret passage into the countryside.
He would keep his name, John,
but he would spend the days
shoving manure, gathering hay.
If someone met him they'd know
how happy he was. To eat corn
and porridge. To labor underneath
the plain white sky's copper coin,
to receive no other pay than this.