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My Other Child

I have a child
who is so bad
He makes me yell.
He makes me mad.

I hear him running on the stairs,
But when I look, there's no one there.
He scatters toys across the lawn.
He sets alarms to ring at dawn

He skips and bounces down the hall.
He knocks the pictures off the wall.
He takes the cushions off the couch.
He spits chewed food out of his mouth.

He jumps upon my just made beds.
He cuts the hair from toddlers' heads.
He peels the paper from the walls.
He loses every. single. ball.

He picks the heads off all the flowers,
and turns the hose on them full power.
He leaves it running in the grass,
to make mud puddles in which to splash.

He tracks the dirt across the floors.
He paints with mud upon the doors.
He digs up flowers in the yard.
He bends his brother's baseball cards.

He leaves the tops off all the pens,
After writing on the walls with them.
He pees on toilets, floors and sinks.

It is he who made the fart that stinks.

He tosses clothes around the room.
and mixes toys in with them too.
He fills his pockets up with sand,
and gum, and rocks, and rubberbands.

I find them later in the wash
sometimes stuck to clothes and socks.

He is to blame for many wrongs,
not putting things where they belong.
The corner has a welcome mat,
a balled up towel, a coat, a hat,
some rocks, some sticks, a spoon, some glue,
a cup that has ants,
or at least it used to.

The soap he breaks into little bits.
And on the mirror, he always spits.
The expensive shampoo he likes to waste,
and paint the sink with blue toothpaste.

I confess sometimes I have to yell,
"Who DID this? Now, you must tell!"

I question children one by one,
"Did you do this?"
"I'm not the one."

They say "Mommy, you must believe,
"That is not something done by me."

"If not you, who could it be?"
The answer always is,
"Not Me."

Not Me, Not Me, what a naughty child,
so destructive and so wild.
But I tell you, he is clever
I have never seen him, never.

I might rethink my spanking stance,
And get him on the seat of his pants.
If I could catch him in the act,
I'd give his bottom several whacks.

But really I wish
That he'd just go.
And take his sidekick,
Ida Know.

_____

Visit Chris Jordan's personal blog, Notes from the Trenches

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