Grandpa, Grandma, can we talk to you
about our mom and dad?
I don’t know quite what’s going on
but things are getting bad.
Dad’s been crying at the news
and his voice is higher pitched.
His jeans get tighter all the time
and there’s a limpness in his wrist.
Meanwhile, mom’s been swearing more
and wearing suits to her new job.
She hasn’t fixed her hair in months
and on weekends she’s a slob.
Dad’s afraid of everything –
plastic straws and – what’s a Russian bot?
Last week was Independence Day,
and he said he “just forgot.”
Mom hasn’t cooked a single meal
since she went marching in D.C.
And now our yard has all these signs
that say “welcome refugees.”
Dad almost asked if it was right
but she wouldn’t let him speak
so he’s been getting craft beer growler fills
every day for two straight weeks.
We don’t know what to do right now
We’re prolly just too young.
But maybe you’ve got some idea
of what’s been going on.
Granddaughter you’re a clever girl
and grandson you’re no fool.
So we’ll tell you something here and now
that you’ll never learn in school.
You’re noticing about your folks
that something’s kinda wrong.
It’s not just them – it’s everywhere.
We’ve been watching all along.
If it’s hard these days with mom and dad,
to know just which is which
You may not have the words for it,
But your dad’s your mommy’s–
You’re right, grandpa, school’s no help
our teachers are all so strange.
They say two-plus-two and Judy Blume
both equal climate change.
They took us out of class one day
to line up on main street
with signs that said the world would end
from the President’s next tweet.
I just want to build some things,
and when sister tries to sew
they swear that STEM’s the thing for her
and I’m privi- toxi- I don’t know!
Do you think that you could talk to them?
To our parents and the school?
Tell them that they’re scaring us
and that they all seem real confused.
We surely could go talk to them
but they hate that we’re so old.
We remind them of the ways they’ve failed
and the truths they’re scared to know.
There’s a wisdom in our wrinkled skin
that they’re trying hard to kill.
And if kids like you are catching on
they’ll start trying harder still.
For now it’s good you’re noticing
and that your guts say it’s not right.
Just keep each other close at hand –
pick your spots, and fight your fights.