The Kingdom of Speculation
Eggs coddled or poached are the food
of choice in the Kingdom of Speculation
for eggs are exceedingly rare and stored
in brooders. Brooders are guarded by men
who sport checkered vests and twirl
batons. To steal an egg is to be beaten
to death and the graves of thieves
are stacked like dominoes at the edge
of town. The rich feast on eggs
while the poor eat dumplings which look
like eggs but sink in the belly. Chickens
are revered, the most popular tunes
being hymns composed in their honor.
In this Kingdom only the weather is fair
and the air holds the scent of cardamom.
Overhead birds fly ignored, singing
an ostinato: what if, what if, what if.
-Barbara Goldberg (Beltway Poetry Quarterly)