“You should forgive him,” my mother says.
“He can’t help it that his dancing causes heartache.”
“Drop it, Mama,” I say. “Don’t should on me.
The day I forgive him will be the day
the Eiffel Tower topples
or the Tallahatchie Bridge gets broken into dust.”
I swear that woman thinks I should jump through
ten thousand-thousand hoops for Jim Bob,
but I’m so sick of jumping
my lung’s about to burst.
I’m ready to bolt from this family and find another.
Any family will do, as long as it’s not this one.
I just can’t shoulder the burden anymore.
Besides, my feet are gettin’ itchy.
I hear that down there at the river shallows,
where thirty sinners gathered to be baptized last night,
there’s a preacher-man from Mountainville—
some say he’s a prophet—
who can tell me what I need to know.
Think I’ll go and visit him,
him and all those sinners.
My feet are gettin’ itchy
and I’d best be on my way.
© 2011 by Magical Mystical Teacher