I’ve been working on this poem for a while, since the beginning of the summer actually. We had just moved back north, and I was lying in bed with the windows opening listening to the chirps and trills of the tree frogs. It is a sound from childhood I had forgotten about, and I imagined these tiny frogs bellowing their love songs into the early summer air.
Over the fan I hear the chirping of a tree-frog,
newly emerged from his bath
of slime and jelly.
Balanced on his toes in a formal posture,
all three chambers of his heart trembling with desire
he sings: I am a man.
I am a man among boys,
my legs are hard with muscle
and my skin is smooth and damp.
I command this tree for only you.
I can fill your belly and keep you warm
in our cool summer nights.
I am a man.
Beside me, you are already asleep
but you smile in recognition
just the same.