My mouth is full of spit and malapropisms
like “You could have hit me with a fender”
and “Having one wife is called monotony”
and I shake my head at some of what my tongue has done
like licking a coat of lacquer or wearing a coat of liquor
and when my head shakes my tongue shakes inside of it
and my teeth rot away like an old fence
and old fences make old neighbors
as a poet almost said, his words like butterflies
I caught in the net I call my ears which didn’t
recognize the efforts of my own tongue
silenced as I stood in lines in school hallways
bitten bloody as a bully dared me to say just
what I thought when what I thought was
I wonder who gave this guy a badge and thus
my tongue got trained my tongue managed
to become a three-piece suit which come to think of it
may be what people mean by tongue-tied I don’t know
but holding a job often meant holding my tongue
which inspired my breath to float so far away
I thought I’d never catch it so no wonder the words
don’t come when I need them or come out wrong