A JERK IN THE USUAL WAY
When I was tentacled by jellies
swimming in the Severn,
I writhed and cried,
turned white as C-major,
was doused in white vinegar,
smelled like sautéed spinach.
That was when I thought heaven
would be living on a houseboat with a basset hound,
or on a yacht on the Potomac,
when I convinced my brother
my parents were really just big otters
dressed up in convincing costumes.
But when he was writhing,
whining, stung and crying,
I told him the jellies were tenderizing him,
softening him for Thanksgiving
which (for them) was sometime in July.
That was when he believed
every word I said, when my father explained to him
what a little brother is, when
he spent the whole night howling:
don’t eat me.
fiction poetry "fact" photography