The waiter gives my grandchildren
a cantaloupe sized ball of pizza dough
as formless as Madagascar on the world
map. The children throw it back and forth,
tear off pieces, steal it from one another,
offer the tiniest pea to their father who tries
to rope them in, put it down, don’t make
such a mess. And so to distract them
I stick dough under my nose: a big snot
I say. I put a piece in my ear bursting
with wax. I fashion a grotesque beard.
So we are all of us laughing. But they want
to copy me, make up a sudden vomit,
a baseball cap, a cell phone. The pizza
which is life itself has come. Have I ruined dinner?
I make up for my bad reputation, call for the check.
About the Poet
Steve Ablon has published four books of poems: Tornado Weather (Mellen Press, 1993), Flying Over Tasmania (Fithian Press, 1997), Blue Damsels, (Peter Randall Press, 2005), and Night Call (Plain View Press, 2011). His work has appeared in many magazines. He is an adult and child psychoanalyst and an Associate Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard University Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital.