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Grandpa poem


Jolly Jumper


Hey, jolly jumper,
I say to my grandson Will, child
of my child, six months
into this jolly jumping
world, strapped into his blue harness
like a paratrooper, bouncing
from a spring at the threshold
between the living
and dining room. He flexes
his toes on point like Baryshnikov,
shuffles his chubby, muscle-boy
legs back and forth. The old
soft shoe, twinkle-toed, floaty
as a moonwalker, up
and down he goes. Happy boy
noises burble from him like spring
water, as May flowers unfurl their flags
from my daughter’s window boxes:
pansies, begonia, lobelia, petunia.
Words, blossoms, gurgles
of joy. My bubbly buddy. Oh boy,
here comes tasty facetime
with a big brown Labradorian
creature — Harry, eager, four-legged
amble across the room, red tongue
in fleshy full bloom. To lick
is to like, and Harry laps like a wild
beast God who lives on baby drool.
And my Will, my cherub of pure
happiness, receives this animal
love that has come into the world
and laughs and laughs.

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