“Examination” by Annie Lighthart, published in The Poeming Pigeon: A Journal of Poetry & Art (#12), released in October 2022, has been nominated for The Pushcart Prize.
Please enjoy the poem, and feel free to leave a comment.
For I will consider my teeth.
For they are at once a great blessing and bane.
For they are younger than me and yet more speedily decline.
For their wisdom was impacted and pulled fourfold.
For this was done by force and regretted.
For they are a tribe.
For each day they call roll by means of the tongue.
For they have learned by heart their appointed tasks.
For some make themselves hatchets.
For some do the work of a mortar and pestle.
For some live by the sign of the dog and thus tear.
For half live upstairs, half down, and come together amenably for meals.
For they are the servants of the jaw, duly and daily at work.
For they brood over a host of sweet things.
For with age a blast of cold dismays.
For the sound of the drill is a scourge.
For one suffers heavily under the burden of a crown.
For they rue giving pain and grieve the tiniest hole.
For the which penance they nightly abide the whip.
For they reside in darkness and do not complain.
For they tell stories of the vastness outside.
For in their myths the gods are great oaks.
For they consider themselves also noble and rooted.
For they, like the branch, push forth well-loved buds.
For they know that with the little ones they must be parted.
For this is one of many trials they accept with resignation.
For they are inhabitants of a venerable house.
For they realize there is no turning back.