forklift driving lessons

i asked my father to show me how
he heaves one day into another.
a paring knife to sever tendons.
cow meat in the freezer. the future is
carnivorous. morning comes & dew lays like harpsichord notes. 
we stand in the driveway to practice staying alive.
he drinks from a brown bottle & a swarm of owls
perch on the roof to look down on us,
twisting their heads like bottle caps. 
the machine devours me. levers & a turned key.
he says, "now you are a man, now you can
lift anything." i start by carrying him. 

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