she’d lost her fitbit said the sign in the
Y locker room my daughter and I knew
nothing of fitbits but found the word
quick in the mouth not a slow word
like drawl we tried to make one faster
fatbat fetbet fotbot feetbeet footboot
none were quicker but all used tongue
teeth palate lips nimbly we thought then
of slow words like slow itself--is sway
slower? and then the word megan used
last night “a sysiphian job”(shawna’s
restocking books at the library) which
delighted me I’d never heard that name
in adjectival form I finish here with a
few lines by a great poet I used to tell
my classes to show pace the thick slow
words of tiger tiger: what dread grasp
dare its deadly terrors clasp--it takes time
effort to wrap your tongue around those
consonant clumps it’s followed by when
the stars threw down their spears and
watered heav’n with their tears—such
limpid swiftness pace is all in the words
they affect our feelings too so a happy
fitabit to you and a calmly swahmal eve

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