The Creator Takes the Stand

Noah Baldino

I see I see but that’s not
the worst part I can’t
help anybody They have ideas
of heaven I didn’t give them
I just wanted them to have
fingernails and blades
of grass Do you know how impossible
to replace a single blade of grass with
its own particular folds and edges I didn’t mean to
make these perishables before
I invented foresight See
in the beginning there were
limitations Humanity was just
a knot in my throat Now even
the courtroom sketches
accuse me
I am mudslide murdered infant smashed
glass sparrow I have wreaked
no small havoc
I’ll plead guilty
if it saves just one socket
from a knuckle or returns every
long-dead parent Objection Objection
My guilt changes nothing I forgot to create
This world keeps happening
without me It tends
to its own evolutions and cries
in a voice like a dog whistle I didn’t
invent the dog whistle
or the leash only
the ear I’m so sorry for the ear I meant
to do no harm I won’t fit
in a jail cell I invented
escape but also forgiveness Do you
remember forgiveness
What about the mango or the juice
that drips off the lip to sweeten
the ground See I’m good
Everyone’s a good person
aren’t they Aren’t they 


Noah Baldino is a dog enthusiast working towards their MFA in poetry at Purdue. 


Photo by Davidlohr Bueso