On Seeing You, My Son, Overmedicated for the First Time

I drive us through the drive-thru
& you misaim
the fries to your mouth;

flimsy, undercooked strands dropping
on your lap, in the crack beside the door—

that impossible place to reach. Not like
how you once straddled my shoulders &

I held your knees as you stretched
to grab hold of the dogwood branch

for a closer look at fledglings, begging,
as you did then, too, for fast food.

You tell me you’re fine. But you look like
the blue jay in the refuge I extended twigs to.

Through a chain-link fence, offerings added
to its harbored nest while it waits to heal.

And while you sleep, I sweep the car seat, the mat,
toss uneaten fries outside where another bird flies,

claims one & flits back to the forsythia bush
below your window, a stubbled spray of pale buds.



Image: “Dropped french fries” by Elyaqim Mosheh Adam, licensed under CC 2.0.

Christine Jones
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