The orange-and-brown-on-light-olive ottoman
beside the truck on the side of the road
next to the gas station out on the mesa
is apparently for sale. Pathetic, no, but funny,
and funnier still when we stop to buy it for five dollars,
strap it to our rooftop rack, and we take it,
after the farmer’s market, the ten miles home
to the little river just above the bank
below the cottonwoods and prop our feet up.
We talk of Dr. Oz and how we’ve never
read a word. But we must, we must too read
more thoroughly Kierkegaard because we have
read some of him, and knowing him in depth
will help us see how far we’ve dropped to Dr. Oz,
and bathos always works for a good belly-laugh.
Kierkegaard hated mediocrity, and legend has it
the children threw pebbles at his hunched back
as he walked down the street in his coat and hat.
Children are cruel. Our own two girls are not,
however, as we have shown them examples of how
styles change and you never know what might
make a comeback fashionwise or thoughtwise.
You have to be patient and slow to judgment with art.
For instance, this passé velour ottoman.
But then, our little angels think it’s funny to throw it
into the current, right out from under our feet.
It bobs down the river like a dead thing,
and we watch it, wondering if there is
some small chance the man who sold it to us
might live a mile or so downstream and find it
come back to him like a prank or a miraculous gift,
but we know that is as nearly impossible
as our ever reading Kierkegaard again.