Meryl Natchez

why humans?

for the joke, even the pun,
for black humor in a bleak hour,
for the complication of stuff: tangled,
woven, manufactured, compressed, crooked,
cooked, plastic and rubber and Corian,
concrete, steel and asphalt,
for glass blown
from sand and fire,
for grammar, for the 6,500 spoken languages,
for mensch and derrière and giggle and preposterous,
for the winch, the pulley, the level, the wheel,
for faucets that turn on when you wave your hand,
for hands, for their cunning thumbs,
for false teeth,
false testimony, avarice,
compassion, for the known step
of the beloved on the stairs,
arched eyebrow, gap tooth, elfin ear,
for arrival, for departure,
the longing for return,
for the embrace,
the howl, the song,
for the brief spark
in the spiraling