Perie Longo

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A Widow Discovers Her Tires Are Bald When the “Check Engine” Light Comes On

Thirst: Kuwait Poetry Workshop

What I Forgot to Write

Fishing With My Father

What We Live For...

Peanut Butter

Art Helps...

Playing Crash

"Ish"

Dedication (Douglas Family Preserve)

Biography

Marriage & Family Therapist | Registered Poetry Therapist | Poet

To order Perie's books, contact her at perie@west.net, visit Amazon.com, or phone her at 805-687-1619.

"Ish"

for Paloma

Is everything when you’re just a little
over one, beginning with your blanket
satin-trimmed, the feel of whipped clouds,
your mother’s skin when day thins
and you’ve grown tired pointing “ish” for brilliant fish
in the aquarium, and juice, bits
of apple, your sister’s toys.
When she won’t share even one,
you yank her hair with “ish”
some more, that and this.
When adults ask “what is it?”
you arch your back and yelp.

Soon enough you’ll learn more words
don’t help, you can say them all
to no avail and still hear grownups speak,
“Be clear, Sweet Pea,” stare past you
and keep talking their own gibberish.

Meanwhile it’s “ish” for flower,
frog, turtle, leaf, but oh the dog
is something else. This creature
near your size who crawls on all fours
has its own word, a “woof,”
who wags its tail with such vigor
you run to pummel this miracle,
wooly like your blanket and place
on its mouth a big “ish”
it fully understands and returns
plentiful, slobbery licks.

 

(in Passager, Summer 2009)