Wednesday poetry break

Our poem today was featured on The Writer’s Almanac a few days ago. It’s by a poet with whom I am not familiar, but I think you’ll enjoy it.

Amphibious

My daughter wants to take
a framed oil painting to school,

a nude with loose breasts and a belly
ripe as the full moon. Why? Because

we’re studying frogs, she says,
and it’s a frog. I cock my head

to consider the angle of the draped arm
but can’t get past the female form.

My daughter, though, is swimming
in amphibians, bringing home

scribbled pictures of tadpoles sprouting
splayed feet. At night, she sleeps

in the bedroom I painted pink,
her shelves lined with confectionary

teapots and cups. By day, she wants
to be her brother when she grows up.

Lately, she’s morphed into
a creature who’d rather squirm free

than be held. O, how we see what we
want to see. My daughter, looking at

a nude, sees a frog for show-n-tell.
I look at her and see myself.

— Erin Murphy

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