Poetry is a tricycle

What is poetry to you?

A tricycle — pedaled sheepishly along the sidewalk.

A friend asked me once, “What is poetry
to you?” And I told him, “A tricycle.”
He cocked his head like an animal
told silly human things that make no sense.
So I said, “Because bicycles
are prosaic, uncertain. Bound to fall.”
He shook his head, “The bicycle doesn’t fall — you
do.” And I told him, eyes to the floor,
“If I were on a tricycle, I would not fall.”
He nodded, understanding somehow, like
an uncle whose mind is on dinner. And
we left it at that: me on my tricycle,
rolling past the wishwash on the sidewalk,
him on his bike, speeding along the freshly baked
asphalt in the sun.

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