The Lettuce

best unknown poets
Carrie Does Poems
Carrie Does Poems
The Lettuce

Hi! This year (2023), I’m continuing my quest to share a poem on my blog and podcast and read it aloud. It’s all a part of my quest to be brave and apparently the things that I’m scared about still include:

  1. My spoken voice
  2. My raw poems.

Thanks for being here with me and cheering me on, and I hope that you can become braver this year, too!

For Anne & Maxine

Why is it that the dead

Never listen to my pillow talk?

I am tired, but can’t sleep

Again and again and again.

You snore next to me

And occasionally twitch

As the dog snuggles in between us,

Released from her crate

Because she cries so much.

Again and again and again,

Why is that my whines

Never wake anyone up?

Not even myself.

The Lettuce

Again this summer 
I’ve forgotten to harvest 
the lettuce that we planted
when the ground was barely workable, 
warm enough to support the tenderness 
of seedlings, brown, pale, and white, barely 
opening to the world, the air, the sun. 

We are still human, he tells me, even though I think 
that we may be losing whatever it is that makes humans human? 
Humanity seems a fickle word now that pundits use it 
to talk about the unfurling of threats, bombs, lies. The lettuce,

when you forget to harvest, shoots up 
like it’s trying to reach the sky, but it rots
from the outside and in towards the core, 
slowly taking over the joy of green, crisp leaves.

We are like this. Everything greens and grows and rots 
when we aren’t looking. Democracies,
romaine, bibb, souls, humanities. 
How can I forget to harvest the lettuce? 
Why do we plant it at all? 

Hey, thanks for listening to Carrie Does Poems.

The music you hear is made available through the creative commons and it’s a bit of a shortened track from the fantastic Eric Van der Westen and the track is called “A Feather” and off the album The Crown Lobster Trilogy.

Author: carriejonesbooks

I am the NYT and internationally-bestselling author of children's books, which include the NEED series, FLYING series, TIME STOPPERS series, DEAR BULLY and other books. I like hedgehogs and puppies and warm places. I have none of these things in my life.

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