This is the story of my grandfather Benjamin Simonds
who survived Auschwitz. He kept
a scrap. Torn label of a can of con-
densed milk. He took dictation. He
dictated. He flipped the dialectic flapjack. He was
a gambling man. People think prisoners don't gamble.
Gamblers are always and only prisoners.
Once he told me that the spine is a prison.
I was going to write a poem about giving birth,
about meconium and vernix,
the cubic zirconium
scattered on the floor tiles of the hospital room.
It would have been about false
windows that face false
the tiny hamburger—the mustard too yellow and sweet…
is all about showing off how different it will be from
the old curriculum. The old
books point us to the new
ones won't matter when the old
ones point us to the
new. You, the new you
will learn one