This week's poetry Thursday's totally optional prompt was to write about unfinished conversations.
My older son is fascinated by animals and animal behavior and has been reading a fantasy book series by Jane Lindskold in which "Royal" animals converse with human-like complexity using body language.
Since his favorite animals are wolves, this is a poem for him. I'm publishing it early as I'll be traveling all day Thursday.
I say, don't forget your rubber bands; you flash
me a silver-tracked smirk, the trademark
teenaged tongue stuck out between double
layers of elastic. I translate: Be safe, your reply,
mom, I'm not a baby. There is no failure
to communicate, only the language
of eyebrows, elaborate shrugs, no different
from conversations with ears and tails,
hackles and throaty snarls. We are pack.
Still submissive, you bare your throat and belly
for a little while longer. Your paws
eclipse mine, I trip over sneakers strewn
in your slipstream. You lope; awkward
stride lengthening as you pull ahead,
the distance increasing between us.
I wait for the full moon and howl.