Poetry and Poetics
ROBERT DARWIN WEIGHS IN
The boy’s a drifter--I pulled him from Rev. Butler's
for low grades, being excessively lazy. "Son," I warned,
"you care for nothing but shooting, dogs, and rat-catching,
and you will be a disgrace to yourself and your family."
His classmates called him “Gas Darwin,” after his
chemical experiments in our shed. Shipped him to medical college,
Edinburgh, no small cost. Two years bored. He learned
from a South American blackamoor, prattled about exploring
the rain forest. Stuttered like an odd bird, "Wha-wha-wha-wha,"
I turned him toward the clergy and Christ’s College.
His new scheme? Sail round Cape Horn to pick bones.
"Charles," I advised, “another career change looks suspect.
You’ll sleep poorly in a hammock above the stove. Don’t go!”
© by Marilyn Kallet
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