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Revenge Poems From Babies

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Babies might not be able to articulate themselves very well -- but don't be fooled. They're onto you. In a new poetry collection, "To What Miserable Wretches Have I Been Born? Revenge Poetry for Babies and Toddlers," Suzanne Weber channels her inner vengeful infant to bring readers laugh-out-loud meditations on all the ways we've wronged our young. The titles alone are brilliant -- for example, "The Conditions of Unconditional Love" or the straightforward "What The F*ck Is That?" Herewith, two of our favorite selections from the book:

Where Are My Hands??!!??

I had hands.
I know I did.
I was born with them.
They were there this morning.
What have you done with them?!!??
For that matter, where are my arms?
Last thing I remember,
you lay me on a blanket
and just kept
wrapping
and twisting
and tucking
and tightening
and then
I had no hands.
Or arms.
Come to think of it, can’t really see my legs or feet either.
And what exactly do you expect me to do in this position?
It’s not really conducive to anything except lying here.
What if I just fall asleep like this?
You’d like that, wouldn’t you?
Have this little limbless body fall asleep
so you wouldn’t have to think
about my needs and attending to them.
You might as well have gotten yourself a houseplant.
Or a throw pillow.
Or a pet rock.
Whatever. Fine.
I’ll sleep.
But only because
trying to do anything else
is
pointless.

Next: "I'm Not Okay"

Copyright © 2012 by Suzanne Weber. Excerpted from "To What Miserable Wretches Have I Been Born? Revenge Poetry For Babies And Toddlers," by Suzanne Weber. Published by Atria Books.

Iʼm Not Okay

When I bonk myself really, really hard
on the edge of the coffee table…
When I fall down ʻcause Iʼm just learning to walk
and Iʼm still not that steady on my feet…
When I slip off the swing ʻcause you were checking your iPhone
and not watching me as carefully as you should have…
Guess what?
That shit hurts!!
Youʼve got to know it does.
So why is your first reaction always,
“Youʼre okay! Youʼre okay!”?
Do you honestly think youʼre gonna trick me into thinking I didnʼt just
get an enormous goose egg on my forehead?
Or that my knee isnʼt gonna bleed like a mother-fucker?
Or that the bruise on my elbow is just a smudge of dirt?
When was the last time you smacked a vulnerable part of your
anatomy against a hard unforgiving object?
It HURT, right?
Now imagine everyone around you just dismissing your pain
with an idle wave of the hand and a pat on the head and an
“Oh, youʼre okay.”
And, even though you actually felt the lump rising on your head and
in your throat, you had to smile gamely through your discomfort,
because you could see that everyone was just so invested in
your not crying or making a fuss?
If you understand a fraction of what Iʼm trying to tell you,
then you understand that “okay” is exactly what I am not.
However…
I wouldn't say no to a lollipop.

Copyright © 2012 by Suzanne Weber. Excerpted from "To What Miserable Wretches Have I Been Born? Revenge Poetry For Babies And Toddlers," by Suzanne Weber. Published by Atria Books.