My first psychologist had a poster:
Second Place is the First Loser,
above a fern made of fabric.
If there had to be a sports idiom,
I wish it had been Inches Make
Champions because I am tired now
of rooms where I do not improve.
This morning, I found a possum
in the road by Kenny’s mailbox.
Her neck broken, a pouch full of infants.
There was no blood, like the time
I saw a man lying under the interstate,
either asleep or dead, and did nothing.
Lord, I don’t think there will ever
be enough applause in this life,
and so, I cling to You, Who made
glory out of loss, Who made roses
bloom out of bones and excrement.
You Who day by day puts eyes
on my heart in place of wounds,
Who puts children in my rough paths
to ask questions, to ask me to comb
food bits from their hair.