pegasus, you too know what it means
to be fathered. we would
put leashes on trees
& ask them to be horses.
it never worked.
built a fence of pencils.
the gods emptied their golden chalices
on our heads & laughed. as children
we didn't have enough air.
resorted to breathing through straws.
smoke came & then fire.
sometimes our shoes would fill
with blood & so we'd rinse them
using the garden hose.
underneath the evergreen
we found medusa's head. a basket
for pine cones. shrugged & wondered
how she might have died.
her snakes shed,
this is when we first saw you.
trying desperately to fly away,
running & jumping then crashing
into the dirt. sprinting alongside you,
we said, "you are so close,
you are so close." you were not close.
not at all. you asked to see
the chimera & we looked at each other.
no wanting to admit which one of us
it was. this is the kind of secret
brothers keep to their graves.
i will not tell you not even
in this poem. you, pegasus, wept.
said, "i just want to be unchallenged."
heros cut through our yard
to get to the street, walking towards town
where they would buy hard candies
& diet soda. we brushed you & promised
to be kind. in the kitchen
our father cut new holes in his belt
to draw it tighter. his hair
grew in snakes. pegasus, you asked,
"do you love your father?"
without hesitation we said,
"yes, of course we do." the rim of fear
in each word. knowing he could hear us.
his steak knife. the horses
he kept in the basement.
we told you, "you should run away."
dashing again the whole length
of the yard, we got you to fly.
you tried to thank us. your wings
beating, dropping white feathers.
we disposed of them
after you were gone.
would not want our father to know
you had been here.
still i kept one. put it under my tongue
& waited eight more years
for it to dissolve.
today, it is gone & i am looking at
my snake tail in the mirror.