I know dinosaurs.
They reappeared on Earth early in 1990.
The first ones were conjured by Vitsie,
the Video Friend.
She calls them "terrible lizards,"
that's what "dinosaurs" means,
and somehow you transmogrified
Terrible lizards for the town!
sung with gusto, command,
one arm raised like a little Mussolini
in blue pajamas with a zipper
and plastic feet.
You worked those names
over your lips:
Stegasaurus. (Spike Tail!)
Tyrannosaurus Rex, deadly hero
of small boys everywhere.
Dinosaurs crept out of the Mesozoic Era,
sneaking under Christmas trees,
into birthday presents,
grandpa trips to the flea market.
Some roared, blew smoke,
took halting Frankenstein steps
before tumbling to the carpet.
Some were just squishy friends
for hugging. Others managed
to paint themselves onto sheets,
curtains, quilts, walls, growth charts.
They spilled into your cereal bowl,
flickered on screens,
telling their cautionary tales
like wise old African griots.
It was a prehistoric zoo.
In about 1994 they Darwined
into Japanese move monsters.
It was adaptation.
The age of technology.
What could they do?
They were destined for bigger things,
major motion pictures,
in the Walk of Stars, and smaller things,
stories whisper-giggled at bedtime.
Godzilla on a spaceship. With you!
And you have special powers!
Flight! Invisible Sheild!
We still don't understand extinction.
A comet or some other cataclysm
made them all pop out of the world,
into some geological magician's hat.
In my house they just trudged
into toyboxes and closets
like another Rite of Spring.
- Add a