Monday, March 15, 2010

King of the Jungle

At six years old I am not aware of the exact

implications of the word stroke.

And when you sit me on the bottom of the

oak staircase with the wrought iron banister

I can see that you have been sobbing and your

fear at 32 is more intense than any of mine.

I do not know exactly what was said during that

phone call, only that it was spoken by my grandmother

from an emergency room somewhere and heard in front

of a glowing kitchen window on a phone old

enough to have a curly cord and that it is

the hottest part of the summer and we’ve just

been to the zoo to ride the carousel and see the

lions. And that when it is finally relayed to

me I do not understand the change of life it

will imply or how unfair it is to keep a

lion in a Midwestern zoo confined to a glass

enclosure, pacing the same worn spots, gawked

at, its majesty doctored and forgotten.

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