For a couple of years, maybe three,
my daughter has been obsessed
with Marvel super heroes,
Thor, Captain America, Ironman,
and Guardians of the Galaxy.
They must provide for her
something I do not, adventure,
attractiveness, a good right hook.
While I’ve been writing poems,
she’s been wanting someone
who makes billions building weapons.
While I’ve been taking out trash
and making spaghetti dinners
she absently twirls her fork into,
she’s been wanting someone
to save the world from killers
made of goo and bad costume design.
Or someone who can throw a hammer,
not blister his thumb with one.
I think she even prefers bad guys to me,
Loki with his backstory of Asgardian hurt
gets rehashed in the car on the way to school
while my struggles growing up in the ghetto
get an eye roll, maybe, if the headphones
aren’t already placed over her ears.
Sometimes I look at myself in the mirror
and inspect the newest gray hairs,
turn sideways to see the advancing girth.
Then I go vacuum her bedroom again
before taking her to the next movie,
all the banal things a father must do
so in the moments before the lights dim
her hopeful eyes can drift to
some young boy in the theater
who will swoop in and save her.


Photo by Luke Tchalenko (The Telegraph)