Seems long ago a bottle of Brut by Faberge
On his bureau proved an advertisement campaign
Successful. I don’t know if it gave him any more
Victories on the road or anywhere else I prefer
Not to think about. Was it Joe Namath or some
Other Archetype of Men who sold it to me?
My best friend and I scoured the land
Collecting smooth stones, lucky stones,
A small one and a larger one glued together;
painted into a little dog for him, its hard
head and body garnished with seven holes
punched from paper for feet, ears, and tail.
How do we count our fathers’ birthdays?
I guess it doesn’t matter, anymore. That bottle –
Broken, empty, or lost; just an uncounted thought.
The tiny but cute creature maybe burying bones
In between boxers in the top dresser drawer.
When do we become grateful for the counting?
And when do we become grateful for the last?
At some point, the puzzles prove too difficult,
No more body parts to mend and patch with a kiss.
We still count, but now, we cart the kids. A small hand
Clasped in our own, sprinkled with fresh brown
spots, assures us of the best gifts ever given.