Understanding toast

Planted on the floor, my little rubber tree,
a laugh stuffed into his cheeks.
We’ve just been to see the whole wide world:
wind, cats, cars, a giggling drain-pipe,
the lickable bendiness of a leaf.

Breakfast, and he is understanding toast,
the slow squidge of it.
Studies in his fist the sluggy bread
to see what it will do.
A grin spills out.

As he splashes the air it slops
against the kitchen, pops the lid
from his lunchbox I am trying to pack
for later. So much life.
Such a small container.


First published in Catalyst 2005