Friday, July 01, 2011

When Diplomacy Won't Work

There’s a turf war going on in my yard.
Dandelions are crowding out grasses
with their unauthorized settlements
of fat sprawling leaves. They've set
up dictatorships commanding
all subjects to wear yellow turbans.

I am determined on regime change,
having been influenced in favor
of green by pretty catalogs from seed growers
makers of fertilizers and weed killers.
But I am constrained from chemical warfare
by a higher authority--my wife--and her allies
the deer, who are neutral, nibbling equally
on both sides, and the salmon who swim
around in the saltchuck at the end of our street.

The dandelions have learned to keep
their heads down during mower assaults.
I've lowered the blade in retaliation
but the enemy counters by early ripening,
releasing brigades of midget paratroopers
to spread terrorist cells wherever they land.
Collateral damage body count averages
six slugs per skirmish but I say if the little
buggers can't get out of the way
they deserve what they get.

I have a plan.
I will raise the debt ceiling and mobilize
a children's army to dig up the dandelions,
a nickel a pop. It will be a holy war.
When the number of holes
exceeds the number of dandelions,
I will know I am winning.

In the end, I will win.
God is on my side.