It’s been a traumatic week… Gearbox was running to catch a rocket in Engineering camp, ran into a bench, and knocked out his two front (adult) teeth. The dentist put them back in and wired them to their neighbors but now we have to wait and see if they take. I’ve been trying to stay upbeat and positive for my scared little boy despite massive dentist-induced anxiety.
This is all to say that at 6:30 on Friday morning, as I sip my coffee, the only thing going through my head is teeth-dentist-teeth-dentist-teeth-dentist. A litany of fear and anxiety.
Since I can’t think about anything else, here are two tooth-related poems.
The first is a dentist-fear-fueled excerpt from Shel Silverstein’s The Crocodile’s Toothache:
And the dentist laughed, “Oh isn’t this fun?”
As he pulled the teeth out, one by one.
And the Crocodile cried, “You’re hurting me so!
Please put down your pliers and let me go.”
But the dentist laughed with a Ho Ho Ho,
And he said, “I still have twelve to go-
Oops, that’s the wrong one, I confess,
But what’s one crocodile’s tooth more or less?”
I’ve had the dentist-pulling-the-wrong-tooth nightmare (and reality). *shivers*
We’re not into crocodiles at the moment, but we are into sharks — Gearbox has a huge fossilized shark tooth collection. When we lived in North Carolina, he would spent hours combing the beach for tiny shark teeth. He even found a megaladon tooth the size of a quarter. Right now I really, really, really wish Gearbox had shark teeth instead of human teeth so that two teeth would grow to replace the ones he lost.
Shark’s Teeth by Kay Ryan is about those “small shark’s-tooth shaped fragments” of silence in life. As every parent knows, those seconds of silence can be more frightening and dangerous than all the noise in the day. That pause of quiet when you get the phone call from the nurse saying, “there’s been an accident, can you come get your son”. The heart-stopping silence as he stares at you with tears and blood running down his face, looking lost and scared.
[…] An hour
of city holds maybe
a minute of these
remnants of a time
when silence reigned,
compact and dangerous
as a shark. […]
Gearbox is a real trooper. He has been cheerful and positive through this whole experience. I could use a little of his grace and courage.
Poetry Friday is hosted this week by Bibliophile at Life is Better with Books.